Core Organizer Application, Spring 2023

The Access Network would like to expand the Core Organizer (CO) team through an application process during Spring 2023, and this page will outline the application process and answer some potential questions. This is our third round of CO applications, and the process from our first and second round of applications is archived here and here. This iteration of applications will be similar but includes a few simplifications to reduce the load for applicants and reviewers. Ben Pollard (), Devyn Shafer (devyn.shafer@gmail.com), Chandra Turpen (turpen@umd.edu), Gina Quan (gina.m.quan@gmail.com), and Gloria Lee (jia.gloria.lee@gmail.com) are the “point people” who will be coordinating this process; please reach out to them at any point if you have questions, concerns, and so on.

**2023 update – funding situation**

COs are compensated financially. Access strives to mininimize uncompensated/volunteer work across the network (in alignment with our core values), however, we also recognize that the lived reality of our work does not currently meet this goal. While Access is currently operating with grant funding support from the National Science Foundation (NSF), our current grant will run out of money in Fall 2023. Current COs have already submitted a new proposal to the NSF to continue funding the network, and additional proposals are in the works. However, as of April 2023, funding is not secured to continue supporting the network after our current grant runs out.

We (the current COs) are still proceeding with this round of new CO recruitment as a necessary part of Access contiuing to function, thrive, and evolve. We are also recruiting new COs in anticipation of future funding. However, we want to be transparent about the current funding situation, especially for new COs who apply in this round.

For new COs who are selected this round (as described below), funding is available and guaranteed to attend the Access Network Assembly in Summer 2023, whether or not those individualls are already supported to attend the assembly in another role in the Network. (The Assembly will occur on June 30 – July 3, hosted by Polaris at The Ohio State University.) Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee funding will be available to support new COs, current COs, or any other Access Network activities after Summer 2023.  We are hopefull that we will secure funding before (or soon after) our current grant runs out, and we are doing everything we can to make that happen! We will update this page, and generally be as transparent as we can, as the funding situation of Access evolves.

Who can apply?

We will recruit “internally” to Access by accepting applications from anyone who has attended an Access Assembly, had an official role in the Network as a Fellow or Task Force member, or participated in one of the nine Access sites.

In future rounds of soliciting new COs, we may advertise to and accept applications from people outside of Access, from other organizations focused on student support and equity. For this round, however, we only have capacity to recruit internally.

What do COs do?

These are the critical activities that the CO team has identified as must-dos over the next year or so:

  • Evaluation of the network (e.g., the Assembly feedback survey)
  • Mentoring AFs
  • Mentoring NFs
  • Preparing for and running CO meetings
  • Monitoring budgets and finances
  • External communication and website maintenance
  • Shepherding Starter Kit 2.0
  • Onboarding new COs
  • Internal communication (email list maintenance, maintaining Slack)
  • Mentoring any projects that emerged from the Assembly that are already happening

We also identified things which we would like to do, if we have the bandwidth:

  • More thoughtful and deeper evaluation/research on the network
  • Other possible documentation projects
  • Planning and running CO retreats
  • Additional fundraising (grant writing, looking into other sources of funding)
  • Running the Emergency Fund, if it continues
  • More deliberate outreach to external groups, e.g., on social media 
  • Fostering connections with alumni
  • Mentoring additional task forces (e.g. on NF structure)
  • Mentoring any projects that emerged from the Assembly that have not yet begun
  • Advocating for specific needs at sites on behalf of site leaders
  • Working on expanding the network

If you would like more information about what any of these items mean, please get in touch with a point person (email addresses at the top of this page).

What is the time commitment expected of COs?

We hope to provide flexibility for incoming (and current) COs, so the level of engagement has variability. We have roughly defined three roles within the CO team: Liaison, Starting, and Full COs. These roles are more thoroughly defined with associated expectations, estimated time commitments, and compensation on this page: Core Organizer Role
For a sense of range, the Liaison role corresponds to about 3 hours/month and Full COs correspond to 8+ hours/month.

How many new COs will there be?

Based on these CO activities listed above and our estimation of the time and energy needed for each activity, we aim for this round of CO recruitment to generate between one and nine new Starting or Full COs. The exact number of new COs will depend on a number of factors, including funding availability, mentoring bandwidth, and the needs of the Network.

The number of Liaison COs is separate, and depends on the distribution of CO affiliations across Access sites. Ideally, we would have at least one CO (of any type) from each site.

What is the application review process?

The application review process is broken into four stages:

Pre-Selection (if needed): If there are more total applicants than the entire selection committee has the capacity to consider, then the point people for the application process will read the open response questions for all of the applicants and apply the rubric. After this process, they will make consensus decisions about which applicants to move forward to the next stage such that the number of applicants is small enough that the entire selection committee has the capacity to review them all.

Strengths/Growth Analysis: All members of the selection committee will review the open response questions from the applications, and the point people will use the rubric to assign point values to each category. Every rubric reviewer will have their own tab in a spreadsheet where they will enter this information. One tab will present color-coded summary statistics (such as mean, spread, etc.) across all committee members, broken apart by applicant and by rubric criteria. This step will be done individually.

First Round Selection: The goal of the first round of selection is for the whole selection committee to come to consensus on which applicants are currently suitable to be COs within our capacity to mentor and onboard candidates. This round will happen in a virtual meeting. All members of the selection committee will discuss the applications and use the summary tab of the rubric score to prompt discussions about capacity. The intention is for the color coding to help the committee to identify applicants’ strengths and areas to grow without hierarchical ranking. By the end of this process, the committee will have chosen a preliminary set of applicants to fill the number of CO positions available.

Second Round Selection (if needed): If there is an excess of qualified applicants, the committee will consider the demographics of the applicants to ensure that the resulting CO team includes diverse perspectives.

What is the application timeline?

  • Monday, May 8: Applications are due (but please reach out to the point people if you need more time!)
  • Wednesday, May 10: Pre-Selection phase completed
  • Thursday, May 18: Strengths/Growth Analysis and First Round Selection phases completed
  • Monday, May 22: Second Round Selection phases completed (if needed)
  • Wednesday, May 24 (if not before): Applicants are notified of results

Who will be on the application review committee?

The review committee will consist of about 13 current COs. All current COs are included on the review team by default, but can opt out if they wish. Current committee members (subject to change) are:

  1. Ben Pollard (point person)
  2. Brianne Gutmann
  3. Chandra Turpen (point person)
  4. Devyn Shafer (point person)
  5. Gina Quan (point person)
  6. Gloria Lee (point person)
  7. Joel Corbo
  8. Kristy Mardis
  9. Luis Miguel de Jesús Astacio
  10. Mackenzie Carlson
  11. Mayisha Nakib
  12. Noah Charles
  13. Scott Franklin

Of these committee members, a subset of five COs are acting as “point people.” The point people will do a strengths analysis of all the applications, scoring each one using the rubric (see below). They will present the results to the entire review committee for a final decision. The point people are also responsible for shepherding the application process in general, which includes communicating with applicants, answering questions about the process, coaching people through creating an application, organizing the logistics of the selection process, following up with applicants if the review committee has questions or needs more information, and communicating the outcomes of the selection process. If you have any questions or concerns about any part of the new CO recruitment process, including what you should include in your application, please reach out the point people. You can find their email addresses at the top of this page.

How will my application be assessed?

The application consists of three open response questions and a number of questions related to applicants’ identities (demographics, site, roles in Access that they have filled, etc). Please see this PDF version of the application to see the exact wording of the questions.

The open response questions will be assessed using the rubric below. The purpose of the rubric is to prompt reflection from applicants, give current COs a sense of needed support for applicants coming into the role, and ensure the set of new Core Organizers has a diversity of strengths and areas for growth. Applicants should therefore think about how their answers align with the rubric when composing their responses, and they should feel free to reach out to the point people (emails are at the top of the page) to discuss what to include in their responses and how that information will be used in the selection process.

Category 0 Points 1 Point 2 Points 3 Points
Commitment to learning, growing from mistakes, humility, and feedback
(6 possible points)
Not addressed in response Ascribes little or no value to humility and feedback Shows humility, and acknowledges the value of feedback and learning from mistakes Provides a compelling personal example of being humble and/or learning from past mistakes
Not addressed in response Little or no commitment to future growth Demonstrates commitment to future growth in general Demonstrates commitment to future growth in particular areas
Identities and corresponding perspectives that they bring to the table
(6 possible points)
Not addressed in response Identity is discussed, but unclear how identities connect to relevant lived experience Identity and lived experience are discussed and connected at a surface level Lived experience stemming from an identity is fully explored
Not addressed in response Acknowledges that identity-based oppression exists, but does not offer further perspectives Discusses identity-based oppression at a surface level Demonstrates a deep and nuanced perspective of identity-based oppression
Alignment with Access
(6 possible points)
Not addressed in response
OR
Explicit, overall mis-alignment with Access’s values
Some alignment with Access values, some explicit mis-alignment Overall surface alignment with Access values Aligned with Access values, evidence of deep consideration
Not addressed in response
OR
Explicit, overall mis-alignment with Access’s values
Outside of Access’s activities and scope Some overlap with Access’s activities and scope Completely aligned with Access’s activities and scope

Question 1 only


Visioning or critiquing one (or more) of the following: a vision for an improved academic culture, a vision for the Access community, and/or critiques of academic or STEM spaces. 
(3 possible points)

Not addressed in response Seeds of a vision/critique are shared, but the ideas are not coherently connected with each other. A coherent vision/critique is shared, but with less well-developed rationale. A coherent vision/critique is shared with a well-developed rationale.
Questions 2 and 3 only

Current skills and past experience
(6 possible points)
Not addressed in response Beginning to demonstrate commitment to relevant activity Demonstrates scattered commitment to relevant activity Demonstrates an ongoing, sustained commitment to a relevant activity
Not addressed in response One narrowly-focused skill/experience Several interrelated skills/experiences A variety of skills/experiences

OK, so how do I apply?

Here is the link to the application.  Before filling it out, applicants should download a PDF version of the application so that they can see all of the questions they will need to answer and plan their answers ahead of time. As part of the application, you will be able to list which type(s) of CO you would like to be considered for (liaison, starting, and/or full). All applicants will be evaluated as a group, rather than by CO type. If an applicant is accepted and applied for more than one role, COs and the applicant will have a conversation to see which role fits best.  Applications are due on Monday, May 8, 2023.

I have a question!

Please reach out to the point people (names and emails at the top of this page) with any questions.

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