In my job I help 75 PhD students each year apply for NIH fellowships by giving seminars to groups of students wherein I go through the steps of how to construct an NIH application. 6 years ago I had the idea to educate students on how to construct NIH applications.
This was so successful that I more than quadrupled the number of successful NIH fellowships from $300k to $1.4m annually. It’s an important skill for our students; it stops the lengthy criticism from accreditation committees; it makes our students more attractive to employers which improves student job search outcomes; and their potential income. HUCTW and Harvard work together to allow me to do my best work by taking care of some items that I would be worrying about otherwise. This includes negotiating for great things like TAP and other programs that inspire me to improve myself.
My job is Student Engagement Advisor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. I work with students on programming, events, and getting them engaged in the HGSE community. I enjoy working with people, learning about students’ interests and helping them bring their ideas to life through events and programming.
I also manage the the Graduate Students in Various Efforts of Service (G.I.V.E.S.) program, a community service program at the school.
Things change daily here and my administration is very open to facilitating events that speak to the needs of students on a moment’s notice. I appreciate the fluidity in my work and the HGSE environment and how it responds to the needs of students, staff, and faculty.
One piece of advice I would give a new University Employee is to find out who your HUCTW reps are once you begin working and ask a lot of questions. There are so many benefits that HUCTW has to offer its members and I think I’ve taken advantage of almost all of them! HUCTW is a hidden jewel at the Harvard community. HUCTW cares about its members as if they are family and decisions are made to support members long term.
--HUCTW Member Tracie Jones, Harvard Graduate School of Education
I am a library assistant for print music acquisitions and copy cataloging at the Eda Kuhn Loeb music library. Working in a music teaching environment and providing direct service to faculty and students energizes me. I’m always learning – that’s the most enjoyable part of my job.
Providing high quality services to the teaching and research initiatives of the University is the primary goal of an academic library. As an acquisitions staff member, I have the opportunity to touch the material in advance and have an overview of the collection. My job here at the music library provides all kinds of opportunities. This past year I successfully curated an exhibition for “100 Years Chinese Piano Music”, and I organized a conjunction event – a solo Chinese piano music recital at University Hall in February 2016.
In my mind, HUCTW provides support for staff in every situation – the Union helps with job upgrades, helps to prevent layoffs, provides support for education, child care, commuting, etc. I received assistance from the Union for my child’s college preparation activities. Thank you, HUCTW!
--HUCTW Member Lingwei Qiu, Loeb Music Library
I manage communications and publications for the college’s Music Department. I enjoy the variety that my job entails. I could be sitting in on a class visit by John Eliot Gardiner one day and copyediting an essay on South African jazz the next. Each day brings something different.
One thing many people don’t know about me is that I’m an author who has published articles, essays, and several books on the history, literature, and contemporary celebration of Halloween.
I have always felt that the leadership of HUCTW is visionary in the best sense of the word. They have always been able to plan with imagination and insight, and can communicate those plans in very clear, concrete terms. And did I mention patient?
--HUCTW Member Lesley Bannatyne, Harvard University Department of Music
I am the Laboratory Coordinator and the Instructional Dental Technologist of the Preclinical Learning Center (PLC) at the Harvard School of Dental Medicine (HSDM). I really enjoy working with the students here at HSDM -- they are an eclectic, talented group from around the world.
In my role, I advise and mentor students working on advanced dental projects, as well as instructing and teaching dental technology techniques to pre-doctoral and post-doctoral students. I also help the faculty to engage with the students by demonstrating the various dental technologies used throughout the curriculum.
My career is defined by my strong teaching and research experiences, and my continued commitment to deliver the highest level of education. I am proud to have been honored several times with the prestigious HSDM Outstanding Teaching Award.
Early on in your time at Harvard you should make sure to familiarize yourself with the various benefits available to HUCTW members. I believe Harvard has become stronger with HUCTW, by helping to create a civilized work environment, where employees enjoy protected benefits and rights.
--HUCTW Member Mohamed Alaeddin, Harvard School of Dental Medicine
I’m a Faculty Assistant for the Gerhard Wagner Lab at HMS. My role is to relieve Dr. Wagner from administrative and functional tasks. The more science he and the other lab members are enabled to do, the better it will be for the world.
I worked at Harvard for 8 years before we voted for HUCTW so I know how much better it is now. I think that HUCTW frees me up in a similar fashion as i do for Dr. Wagner. I don’t have to negotiate every aspect of my work for myself and by myself. There is a standard for how the workday and workload should be. I’ve always been extremely proud that HUCTW is a union the way unions were meant to be. That we respect and work with our managers and supervisors with the understanding that advocating for ourselves doesn’t have to be adversarial.
I have 40+ years of service at Harvard and many reasons to celebrate my longer-service status. And, I have been a member of HUCTW since its inception in 1988, for which I am profoundly proud and grateful.
For myself, now nearer to retirement, the concept of security has become more of a reality. HUCTW has negotiated improvements to our retirement pensions, instituted job security, and revamped the salary structure that allows consistent and steady increases in salary, as well as simultaneously marking steps through our job grades, which keep us moving progressively forward.
So, I not only feel secure about my current role at Harvard, but breathe much easier when thinking about retirement issues and my post-Harvard decades. Through the last two decades, our members and union staff and officers have worked closely with Harvard at every level to improve our working lives and their affects on our personal lives and those of our families. We have established fruitful, ongoing, cooperative relationships with Harvard Administrators and, together, we have changed the lives of our members in very meaningful ways.
Our members have so many positive and uplifting stories about how we all work together to improve our situations and working lives -- from child care and elder care funding to short-term disability programs and maternity and paternity leaves; from establishing funds for our members to attend school and classes, to increased time off and being part of joint committees and councils throughout the campus. And also being able to receive salary increases when those of faculty and exempt staff were frozen during challenging economic times.
Being a part of HUCTW is an experience I never would have imagined in 1972 when I arrived on campus. It has united workers across our vast and varied schools like nothing else could have. We have found our voices, individually as well as collectively. We are committed to our present and our future at Harvard.
-- HUCTW member Joyce Guarnieri, Alumni Affairs and Development
I started working at the Harvard School of Public Health in 2000, but it wasn’t until I returned to work — after taking a couple years off from work to get my master’s degree at the school—that I realized all the things that the union has been working hard for to benefit me. Some are little things, some big things, but they all have added up to make a real difference.
Despite having worked in grant-funded positions, the union has given me a sense of work security. The union helped me pay for my classes while I was working. More recently, we’ve been fortunate to get raises in the tough economy. And, since I had my first son, I’ve gotten great help from paid parental leave and HUCTW’s childcare fund!
-- HUCTW member Charlotte Chang, Harvard School of Public Health
I believe I can credit my longevity and career growth at the dental school to my involvement with the union. Particularly one benefit that I have now is my college degree and I received that with help from the tuition refund program and education release time.
Release time allowed me to take time off to attend classes. It is especially hard when you are working in the health care field dealing with patients and students on a daily basis. It becomes very hard to find time to take off because the needs of the patients are immediate and so important. The union encourages managers and supervisors to work with staff members around scheduling to allow time for career advancements and development needs.
-- HUCTW member Zena Brown, Harvard School of Dental Medicine