F21 Membership Benefits

There are F21 benefits at several levels, all of which require active engagement of the faculty member and his or her senior colleagues in discussing the range of issues that 21st century STEM leaders must wrestle with, day-in and day-out.

Some possible activities:

  • Regular on-campus conversations relative to postings on the PKAL website, such as those included in the work-in-progress PKAL STEM Faculty Development Handbook. Is the advice to new faculty in this resource relevant for your faculty, in your context? Are there opportunities within your community for sharing experiences on how to survive the pre-tenure years? Are there resources from your campus that should be included in this Handbook?

  • Access to conversations within the broader PKAL F21 community through the monthly PKAL Café Scientifique. The intent of these conversations is to bring ideas to the table to spark and inform on-campus discussions about opportunities for leaders to develop leaders.

  • Invitations to PKAL F21 mini-leadership institutes (MLI) and the PKAL F21 Summer Leadership Institute. NSF has awarded PKAL a grant of $100,000 to continue and expand opportunities for F21 members to participate in leadership development opportunities (one day/five day). In the coming year, senior F21 members will be orchestrating a series of MLI’s in different parts of the country, bringing the experiences of the Summer Institute to a wider range of STEM colleagues. The three leadership development threads in all PKAL activities relate to shaping the future, dealing with the politics of reform, and taking personal responsibility to make a difference. To learn more about these activities click here.

  • Participation in the annual PKAL F21 National Assembly. 2009 is the 15th Anniversary of the PKAL F21 Network, and planning is beginning to shape a celebratory event to mark this occasion, sometime in the Spring of 2009.To learn about the 2007 National Assembly click here.

  • Service for PKAL (in/beyond the PKAL National Office is always an opportunity). F21 members regularly contribute when they are in office for other meetings, as well as arrange to work for several days. Sabbaticals also provide opportunities to undertake specific and extended assignments, at a distance or in DC. PKAL has always depended on volunteer leaders, and increasingly members of the F21 community are moving into the ‘village elder’ role that others played in the earliest years of PKAL.

  • Leadership Roles in new PKAL initiatives. For the recent grant from the W.M. Keck Foundation, three F21 members are co-pi’s, they are:

    Susan Elrod, Director of Center for Excellence in Science and Mathematics Education, Associate Professor of Biological Sciences, California Polytechnic State University - San Luis Obispo

    Michael Kerchner, Associate Professor of Psychology, Washington College

    Stephanie Pfirman, Professor & Chair of Environmental Science, Barnard College

    Several other F21 members are on the project team.

    The NSF-funded leadership institutes also have F21 members as co-pi’s and as members of the project team.

    The NSF-funded PKAL “Empowering STEM Faculty: Pedagogies of Engagement” project includes F21 members on the advisory committee. More important, as project activities (workshops, materials development, etc.) evolve, F21 members are being given leadership roles. There will be a major call mid-summer for assistance in building a Handbook on Pedagogies of Engagement, with a particular invitation to F21 members.

    The PKAL F21 network is increasingly visible as a source of leadership and leaders for the broader STEM community. In late April, an NSF program officer said he’d made a special effort to include F21 members in a day-long planning session at the Foundation.

  • Regional networks. Getting to know, exchange ideas and information, and build collaborating networks with colleagues within driving distance (no cost of money or time) is an opportunity through the PKAL regional networks. F21 members have been instrumental in shaping networks in Atlanta, Georgia and Portland, Oregon, including Peter Chen, Spelman College, Terry Favero, University of Portland, and Wally Shriner, Mt. Hood Community College. In large part, these are “bottom-up” initiatives that engage faculty and administrative colleagues beyond the formal F21 network.

  • The CIRTL connection. CIRTL (Center for Integration Research, Teaching, and Learning) at the University of Wisconsin Madison has the goal of preparing current graduate students and post-doctoral students for success as a faculty member in STEM fields. PKAL and CIRTL are collaborating in several activities, including identifying PKAL F21 members interested in serving as a mentor for a CIRTL colleague during his/her first year of undergraduate teaching. Several F21 colleagues are facilitating discussions at the 2008 CIRTL Forum.