SRAonCampus Grant Project Completed, SRA-Upstate NY Plans Fall 2013 Follow-Up

This SRA-sponsored project attracted 400 participants at seven campus events on two continents during 2012. A March 2013 meeting explored strategies to build on the partnerships created.

With SRA-Upstate NY as the lead Regional Organization and with funding from SRA’s New Initiatives program, events designed to explore a variety of risk analysis issues were held from March through October of 2012 at the University of Nevada, Reno; Syracuse University; Boston University; the University of Sydney; the University of Auckland; and Lincoln University. Members from SRA-New England, SRA-Australia/New Zealand and a newly forming SRA group in Nevada shared in this effort.

The purpose of the project was to increase awareness about SRA on selected campuses and to recruit new SRA members. Risk-related issues in environmental and human health, terrorism preparedness, climate change, and hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” were among those explored. For a complete summary of the 2012 effort, including details of the programs, speakers, topics, audiences and “lessons learned” at each location, please see the project final report on the SRA-Upstate NY website by clicking here.

Effort is now focused on ways to continue outreach on campuses and across other sectors. At the March 28 meeting of SRA-Upstate NY, discussion centered on planning for a follow-up event scheduled for September or October, 2013. Organizers hope to use the widespread current interest in “fracking” issues plus their experience with this topic from the Syracuse University SRAonCampus meeting, documented by a series of YouTube videos that are available here, as a foundation for the fall event.

This new effort will rely on technology to overcome barriers of geographical distance and travel costs.

“We used FaceTime successfully to link upstate New York members with a Nevada member for the March, 2012, meeting,” explained SRA-Upstate NY president Peg Coleman. “And a corporate sponsor with a 50-line videoconference license can link our domestic and international partners and speakers for the fall event.”

Other ideas distilled from the 2012 series included aligning future events with the interests of departments on participating campuses; expanding event outreach beyond academia; and partnering with other organizations to create shared events.

Supplemental funding for the 2012 events was provided by the SRA Speakers Bureau and by SRA Metro NY/NJ/CT.