Dr. Jeannie Patrick’s sensitivity, positivity, and caring attitude make her stand out in her role as the Director of the Office of Research Administration. In this fast-paced and ever-changing environment, Patrick has set an example of cultivating a safe and supportive workplace.
“Jeannie fosters a positive, caring culture in our department. She creates space for us to share our concerns and she takes action wherever she is able in response to those concerns. She gives us the opportunity to share our opinions when possible regarding administrative changes in the College and makes us feel valued for our opinions. She values and respects all people as individuals,”
“Jeannie is sensitive to our individual needs. Personally, throughout my family crisis, Jeannie has made it clear that I can take as much time as I need to care for them. She has reassigned my work as needed to accommodate my caretaking responsibilities. I feel completely supported when I need to take time off from work or ask my colleagues to take on my work. Even when we don’t have extenuating circumstances at home, Jeannie is very cognizant of our respective workloads and cares about our mental health and stress levels.”
Patrick’s commitment to her colleagues’ mental health is incredibly important, especially during the pandemic and remote work. “Jeannie goes above and beyond her duties as a supervisor to make sure we can cope with the stress of working remotely. Every Monday, she convenes a Zoom meeting so that we all can catch up on what is happening in our lives outside of work… She recognizes that building this sense of togetherness is key to making a team work well. Every Friday, she sends us an email to let us know how proud she is of the work that we do and share her thoughts about balancing work and life. She even periodically sends cards to us through the mail to check in with us and ask what she can do to make our work life easier,”
Beyond her dedication to fostering a collaborative and healthy working environment, Patrick also values collaboration within her department. “Dr. Patrick organizes the ORA office to be highly collaborative, so that the staff are encouraged to offer assistance to each other when needed. A collaborative team spirit is a pervasive characteristic of the office. Jeannie models what it means to be a supportive and interested colleague; if a staff member has a challenge in their personal lives, I have observed that they feel welcome to share the situation with Jeannie and she offers her support in practical ways. She steps in to offer assistance, and her modelling of this kind of care, respect, and collegial interaction is key to the atmosphere of mutual support and respect that is at the heart of the ORA climate.”
It is clear that Dr. Patrick has made an impact not only on her colleagues’ work lives, but has also touched their personal lives. She has made her colleagues feel heard and is accommodating to their needs. Her ability to unite everyone and show how much she cares is the true embodiment of an outstanding supervisor.