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Developed a mentoring program for the California State University Chancellor’s Office that supports faculty who are submitting proposals and senior faculty learning to mentor their colleagues in proposal development—in conjunction with Dr. Ganesh Raman, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Research in the Chancellor’s Office.

CSU has 23 campuses and 475,000 students, 25,000 faculty, and 25,000 staff, making it the largest university system in the U.S. In 2 years, the external research funding rose from $567M in 2016 to $648M—an increase of $81M. Dr. Raman believes that the mentoring program played a significant role in that progress.

Format: Initiated the program with a webinar 3-hour webinar in 2017 and then in the intervening 3 years delivered both on-site and remote mentoring for 120+ faculty and six faculty mentors at 21 of the 23 CSU campuses.

Audiences served and service types:
  1. Faculty: Mentor in two rounds of light editing/detailed reviews and 1-hour mentoring sessions to discuss reviews
  2. Senior faculty: Advise on how to offer significant reviews/feedback in fields outside their own domain expertise
  3. Full lifecycle proposal development: Provide strategic developmental editing and line editing from start to finish
  4. Non-native speakers: Provide close line editing for some and general advice for all; non-native speakers made up 50%+ of mentored faculty
  5. Library tools: Created a library of review tools for the faculty mentors to assist them in scaling the project

Have begun scaling the program from the Chancellor’s Office to individual CSU campuses, including Northridge.

Topics: STEM disciplines, education, social sciences, humanities, and the arts, but 80% involved STEM topics. Submitted to numerous agencies, including NSF, NIH, NEH, U.S. Departments of Education and Transportation, and California state agencies for food & agriculture, climate change, and the arts, but 85% were for NSF and NIH.

Results: Includes wins for NSF Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program, NSF Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program, and NSF Improving Undergraduate STEM Education: Hispanic Serving Institutions Program (~$45M). The mentoring program has received very positive responses from mentored faculty, faculty mentoring trainees, the Associate Vice Presidents for Research, and the Chancellor’s Office.

Testimony from Participants and Administrators
  • “Dr. Ziegfeld provides strategic reviews for proposals that refine ideas and put them into a competitive, actionable document“. Dr. Ganesh Raman, Asst. Vice Provost, Research, CSU Chancellor’s Office
  • “The in-person consulting session was extremely informative and efficient. Dr. Ziegfeld was very helpful and provided accurate, constructive comments on my draft proposal. I learned a lot from him during this consulting session”. Dr. Mehran Mazari, Asst. Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, CSU Los Angeles
  • “Magic touch. You are awesome!”. Dr. Bin Tang, Asst. Professor, Computer Science, CSU Dominguez Hills
  • “Your feedback was instrumental in us getting the grant. The reviewers could hardly find any fault”. NSF Noyce Program winner, Dr. Jennifer M. Oloff-Lewis, Associate Professor, Education, CSU Chico