14 Ways to Build Academic Networks and Strengthen Faculty Communities

By Duke Faculty Advancement

The Duke Office for Faculty Advancement has awarded seed grants to 14 new projects led by Duke faculty members. The theme for this grant cycle is “Building Academic Networks and Strengthening Faculty Communities.”

A mix of new ideas and expansions of existing initiatives, these projects aim to engage and support faculty through building communities and affinity groups, connecting faculty within and across academic disciplines, and promoting welcoming and respectful academic environments for all members of the Duke community.

A team of researchers in Duke Psychiatry, led by Geraldine Dawson, PhDTara Chandrasekhar, MDMarika Coffman, PhD, won a grant to increase neurodiversity competency of faculty at Duke. Other team members include Carla Wall, PhD, Sam Brandsen, PhD (Physics) and Minna Ng, PhD (Psychology & Neuroscience). Here's a brief description of their project:

Forms of neurodivergence are often under-recognized, misunderstood or under-resourced in a university setting. Building on work led by the Duke Center for Autism and Brain Development and Duke Neurodiversity Connections, this project seeks to foster a community of faculty that feels comfortable incorporating principles of neurodiversity competency into its day-to-day work. Activities include a needs assessment to provide input into the nature and type of training needed to promote neurodiversity at Duke; workshops and materials informed by the assessment; and evaluations at the project’s start and conclusion.

Read about the other “Building Academic Networks and Strengthening Faculty Communities” seed grants.