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Cayuse Champion Spotlight: Jennifer Mills, CRA

By Simon Helton posted 10-01-2021 10:54


The Cayuse community is thrilled to shine its Champion Spotlight on @Jennifer Mills, CRA and Manager of Electronic Research Administration, Training and Reporting at the University of Alabama. Keep reading below to get to know Jennifer better.

Jennifer Mills

How do you interact with Cayuse products on a daily basis?

I am the Electronic Research Administrator at The University of Alabama. I am responsible for the day-to-day maintenance and operation of Cayuse SP and 424. I am also in charge of reporting for the Office for Research and Economic Development.

What do you like to do outside of work?
I enjoy photography and traveling in my free time. I also have three children, so I stay busy with other activities related to them as well i.e. sports, etc.

What do you see as the hottest trends in research today?
One trend that I have noticed for quite some time is the push for interdisciplinary research and the need to work collaboratively across disciplines. I have enjoyed watching my PI’s create new relationships on and off campus with their peers in other disciplines. We all benefit from a holistic approach to research.

What do you consider most promising in the era of big data?
I think the ability to have accurate data in real time is invaluable to the growth of the Research Enterprise.  The ability to drill down and tailor your data to the needs of any given audience is exciting. The ability to focus on specific data and the visualization of that data is a powerful tool to communicate progress and areas of needed growth in the ever-changing world of research administration.

How can an organization stay relevant five years from now?
Taking the pulse of the entire Research Enterprise is key. One model is not always the answer for every Center, Institute, or department. If you are ahead of the game, then you cannot become complacent and trust that you do not need to continue to be proactive in making strategic changes to continue to support current and future success. Making changes in the current state, such as investing in resources to support the future state now can ensure that the hard work to obtain the set goals will continue to pay off long after those goals have been met.

What app would be hard for you to live without?
For me and my role specifically it would have to be SP. Our reporting is based on data housed and managed in SP and we have learned to leverage it successfully so far. We are excited about the further possibilities in the new Platform as well!

If you could meet any historical figure, who would you choose and why?
If there could only be one, it would have to be Amelia Earhart. As a young girl, I remember feeling empowered by her story and her willingness to face challenges head on. She was determined to live to her full potential and not be limited by social constructs. As a woman, I have benefited from her courage and bravery.

Thank you Jennifer for being a Cayuse Champion and sharing your thoughts!​​​​​​