Research Communications Academy

Word cloud for UNH Research Communications Academy


The Research Communications Academy (RCA) trains faculty members, graduate students, and research-related staff to effectively communicate the power and impact of UNH scholarship with a broad audience.

2021 Research Communications Academy

UNH’s 2021 Research Communications Academy will be all virtual via Zoom. Sessions are free and open to all, although participation in mock interviews with news media (Jan. 13) and practice pitches to policymakers (March 9) will require a brief application to facilitate planning and manage limited space.

Launched in 2019, the RCA is hosted annually by the Research Office, NH EPSCoR and the UNH Graduate School.

The 2021 RCA includes:

Communicating with News Media

Wednesday, January 13, 1:00pm

Two veteran news reporters — WMUR reporter Jennifer Crompton and Union Leader correspondent Kimberly Haas — along with UNH media relations specialists discuss how to make any news interview a positive experience in communicating your scholarship.

2:15 – 3:30pm: On-camera interview training

Practice being interviewed by a reporter by doing mock interview with experts from UNH Media Relations. Space is very limited so participants must submit a brief application (details to come). Those who are chosen to participate will work with an RCA mentor to hone their message and delivery prior to the training.

If you have questions about this session, contact Beth Potier.

Better Posters with Zen Faulkes

Monday, February 15, 2:30-3:30pm

Almost anyone who’s wandered the poster hall at an academic conference or squinted at complex figures in a presentation has thought it: There has to be a better way. From overly long titles, tiny text and swarms of logos to bad font choices, color schemes and blurry images – it’s easy to leave viewers confused by your poster’s message. In this session, Zen Faulkes, who’s written the Better Posters blog for more than a decade and whose Better Posters book will be released Jan. 25, will share tips on how to create and deliver conference posters that deliver maximum impact for your research. Faulkes, a biologist and instructor at McMaster University, will also review and workshop finished or in-progress posters submitted by Research Communications Academy participants.

Webinar video is here.

Communicating With Policy Makers

Tuesday, March 9, 12:40 – 2:00pm

Engaging with those who make policy can be a rewarding way to extend the impact of your scholarship. Join elected officials, staff and government advocates to learn about the political process at the local, state and federal level and better understand the types of information that is important to elected leaders as they make decisions on public policy.

2:00 pm Practice Pitches

Develop a public policy "ask" and role-play a meeting with a public official to practice attempting to advance a policy priority. Space is limited; apply here by February 23.

Webinar video is here.

Communicating With Funders

Tuesday, April 6, 12:40 – 2:00pm

UNH’s Research and Large Center Development and Institutional Giving teams will give an overview of their services and how scholars can use them to create effective grant proposals. Joined by a proposal-savvy researchers, they’ll address

  • How to find federal and foundation funders
  • The components of an effective proposal
  • When to access different institutional resources

Panelists include Lynnette Hentges, Research and Large Center Development; Laura Chisholm, Institutional Giving; Ruth Varner, professor of Earth sciences, and Jeannie Sowers, professor of political science.

Webinar video is here.

Using Social Media

Thursday, April 15, 3:30 – 4:30pm

Hear from your colleagues about how to use social media to communicate scholarship, connect with collaborators, create a personal learning network and increase the impact of your work. Panel will include four UNH scholars who reflect a range of social media activity:

  • Nathan Furey, assistant professor of biological sciences
  • Emily Klein ’08G, ‘13G, aquatic sciences officer with the Pew Charitable Trusts
  • Alecia Magnifico, associate professor of English and English teaching program coordinator
  • Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, assistant professor of physics and core faculty member in women’s studies

Webinar video is here.


“I recommend the Research Communications Academy to any researcher — in any field. If we want our research to make a difference, then we need to constantly improve our ability to advocate for it.”

Bryan Mascio

Postdoctoral researcher, education

Research Communications Tips and Resources

Past Research Communications Academy Participants

Read more about the 1st annual RCA