Introduction | Resource Groups | Title IX Resource Coordinators | SPH Success Stories | Professional Development Training & Resources | Taking Your Current Job to the Next Level | Making a Career Change | Harvard Job Opportunities & Postings | Employee Referrals
To start off, there is one thing you should know: Career movement, progression, and support is different for everyone. There is no right answer, no shortcut and no guaranteed road map to your next role at Harvard. Each job, department, field, and culture has it own set of written and unwritten rules to reaching the next level. Harvard is a very large and decentralized organization, with over 30,000 employees and hundreds of departments varying in discipline, objectives and cultures. Knowing where to go and how to get there requires hard work, research, networking, and most of all, patience. While it may not be easy, there are many tools and resources to help you.
Resource groups are groups of employees who join together, formally or informally, in their workplace based on shared characteristics or life experiences. There are various resource groups available to you, across the Harvard community, that contribute greatly to fostering a diverse, inclusive, and equitable workplace. These are safe spaces for support, advocacy, partnership, development and more, and assist with expanding connectivity and increasing overall engagement. We welcome you to explore these groups and encourage you to participate as interested.
Participation in these various resource groups span all Harvard schools and units, and all Harvard employees are welcome to participate across identity lines in allyship and support. A list of Harvard resource groups, and how to get involved, can be found on this Resource Group One Pager.
Title IX Resource Coordinators
Title IX Resource Coordinators serve in a neutral role and support all members of the Harvard community. Resource Coordinators have specialized experience in responding to disclosures of sexual harassment and other sexual misconduct in the Harvard community. They are also aware that your concerns may be of a sensitive nature and can offer supports to help you continue with your work or studies while maintaining appropriate discretion. Find your Resource Coordinator. Additionally, learn more about problem resolution and contact your HR Partner with any questions or concerns.
Brett Otis – Communication and Project Manager in the Department of Nutrition
Brett Otis has over 8 years of service in the Department of Nutrition. Throughout his time here Brett has worn many hats in the Communications function, and has been able to expand his responsibilities and reach at the Chan School and beyond.
Brett was born and raised in Connecticut, but has always felt very at home in Massachusetts as a member of the Wampanoag Tribe of Aquinnah located on Martha’s Vineyard. [Fun fact – with the rapid increase in Zoom connectivity as a result of the pandemic, over the last year Brett has been able to participate in online community classes through the Wôpanâak Language Reclamation Project, which is working to revive Wôpanâôt8âôk (the Wampanoag language) after more than 150 years of dormancy]. He has lived in the Boston-area since graduating from Emerson College in 2012 with a Bachelor’s degree in Multimedia Journalism and minors in Marketing and Health Communications. It was through these courses that he first became interested in the practice of health communication, and knew he wanted to pursue a career in the field.
Brett first learned about the Department of Nutrition during the summer of 2012 when he saw a posting for a Website Coordinator role working with Dr. Lilian Cheung. While he did not end up landing that position, he was hired as a temporary employee by Dr. Cheung to assist with the WordPress migration for the department’s various websites. He was soon brought on as a full-time Editorial Assistant I, thanks to the support of the Department of Nutrition as well as the Prevention Research Center on Nutrition and Physical Activity. Taking on increased responsibilities, he was promoted throughout the years to Editorial Assistant II, Digital Media Communications Coordinator, Communications Coordinator-Strategist, and into his current position—Nutrition Communication and Project Manager. Many of the projects that Brett took on were initialized because of the skill set he brought to the table, as well as the changing nature of digital publishing and communications. In his current role, Brett’s work is mainly centered around The Nutrition Source Website, which received over 10 million pageviews last year, and is consistently one of the highest trafficked sites at our School. As part of a small but dedicated team and with the support of department faculty, Brett works on updating and maintaining over 300 pages on the website, which provide evidence-based guidance and resources for healthy eating and healthy living. Among these resources are the 2020/2021 Healthy Living Guide, which Brett helped design and launch; as well as the Healthy Eating Plate, which he has helped coordinate for translation in over 30 languages by faculty and researchers from around the world. Brett is also involved with the Master’s of Public Health in Nutrition program, and serves as a key guest lecturer for a series of communications modules each spring where he focuses on the translation of nutrition research from science to the general public.
Brett’s experience at Harvard has taught him that it is never too late to learn something new or explore an interest that requires more training. The trust that his peers and mentors had in him over the years gave him the confidence he needed to take on different projects, and eventually help shape his role into what it is today.
Recommendations for Staff
Brett’s recommendation for staff is to network within the School, and take opportunities that may go beyond your main job description. Expanding your skill set through HLC offerings, LinkedIn Learning, and CWD trainings here at Harvard can help you find ways to pursue different interests in your own department. Brett has always found great support for these types of opportunities at Harvard, and believes that expanding your skill set and knowledge not only helps you individually, but can help inform your work and contribute to departmental success. Learning about the intersection of planetary and human health through the work of the Department of Nutrition increased Brett’s appreciation for sustainability as a whole. As a result, Brett took advantage of the Tuition Assistance Program and graduated from the Harvard Extension School in 2019 with a Master’s degree in Sustainability, which gave him a strong foundation for many of the subjects that he focuses on in his current role.
What do you like most about working at SPH?
Brett is very passionate about the amazing research being done in the Department of Nutrition and is grateful for the opportunity to help share it with the world through The Nutrition Source website and other projects. Especially over the past year, Brett has seen how meaningful it is to work at an institution of public health, and to be able to contribute to the overall mission of the School as someone without formal research training. Brett also feels fortunate to work alongside and collaborate with so many amazing people throughout the school, including those in the Department of Nutrition, Prevention Research Center on Nutrition and Physical Activity, and the Office of Communications.
Resource to You
Interested in learning more about Brett and his work, or getting one-on-one advice from Brett himself? Contact him directly via email at firstname.lastname@example.org!
How about You?
Interested in telling us your success story? Let us know by sending an email to email@example.com.
Archived Success Stories
Ellen Chan– Manager of Statistical Training/Biostatistician, Center for Biostatistics in AIDS Research
Armand Inezian – Research Administration Projects Manager, Office of Sponsored Programs Administration
Katrina Soriano – Executive Director, Departments of Nutrition and Molecular Metabolism
Mary Odle – Associate Director of Finance and Operations, Department of Health Policy and Management
Patricie Niyitegeka – Program Director – Nutrition and Global Health, Department of Global Health and Population
Amanda Spickard – Associate Dean for Research Strategy and External Relations, Office of Research Strategy and Development
Alex Garcia-Rangel – Senior IT Project Manager, Department of IT
Li Su – Lab Director and Researcher, Department of Environmental Health – Environmental & Occupational Medicine & Epidemiology Program
Jacquelyn Caglia – Assistant Director of Administration and Operations, Department of Global Health and Population
Trina Weekes – Assistant Director of HRIS, Office of Human Resources
Noman Siddiqi – Senior Lab Director, Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases
Daniel Beaudoin – Deputy Director of Facilities and Operations, Department of Operations
Professional Development Training and Resources
Center for Workplace Development (CWD) – Harvard’s Center for Workplace Development (CWD) provides many workshops/seminars specifically geared towards career and professional development.
Examples of courses that the CWD provides include:
- Rock Bottom Basics of LinkedIn
- Networking for Success
- Informational Interviews 101
- The Role of References
- Career Roadmaps
- Interviewing Skills
- Your Strengths at Work
- Creating Your Best Resume
- Navigating Your Harvard Career
Office of Employee Development and Wellness (EDW) – The EDW is committed to building an engaged, fulfilled, and purpose-driven community and does such by offering a variety of services and programming such as employee development programming, manager specific training, and team & department Retreats.
Harvard Training Portal (HTP) – The Harvard Training Portal also offers a vast range of trainings and courses that can assist with professional growth and development.
LinkedIn Learning @ Harvard – LinkedIn Learning (formerly Lynda.com) provides Harvard employees and students with over 15,000 on-demand courses on computer software, business skills, and creative skills from industry experts.
Employee Assistance Program (EAP) – The Employee Assistance Program offers resources and assessments to help prepare you for a career transition.
Taking Your Current Job to the Next Level
Feel like you are in the right job but looking to take on more or do more complicated tasks? Here are some ideas for you:
- Open up the lines of communication with your supervisor. Set up a time to meet and discuss your future. See if there are any projects or new tasks that you can take on that will expand your current responsibilities. Make sure these tasks are challenging and are more complex in nature.
- Don’t bite off more than you can chew. Make sure that you have the capacity to do more. If you decide to take on new responsibilities, you will need to prove yourself and complete the tasks at the highest quality possible. This will build credibility and confidence with your supervisor.
- Find a mentor. Someone whose career path or current role is of interest to you. Find out what professional development opportunities they took advantage of. Ask them what worked and what did not work.
Making a Career Change
In any career path you choose, it is critical that you ask yourself the following questions:
1. What motivates you in your current role?
2. Do you feel your role, what it provides you, and the lifestyle you live, is sustainable?
3. Does your current role and the path it is taking you, provide you with the work/life balance you need?
4. Does your work have meaning to you? Do you feel that have impact in positive way?
5. Does this field/position challenge you?
6. Does this position utilize your skills and strengths?
The answers to your questions will not point you in any specific direction but they will be key factors in your decision to moving up and around at Harvard. Remember, you spend much of your time at work.
The Center for Workplace Development (CWD) has an array of Resources for Internal Candidates, including how to prepare as an internal candidate, career courses and tools, resume writing and interview skills, networking and more.
Harvard Job Opportunities & Postings
View current openings on the Harvard employment website.
Apply directly through the website above for any roles that you have an interest in and are qualified for. Be sure to submit a complete resume and cover letter. Remember: In order to formally be considered an applicant, you do need to apply online!
Know someone who would be great for an open position at the School? Your referral would be greatly appreciated! Feel free to send an email with the candidate’s resume, along with details of an open position they are qualified for, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For questions, guidance, or one-on-one coaching, contact an HR Partner or Recruiter.
If you have questions related to talent acquisition at SPH, or suggestions for additions and/or edits to this page, please email us at email@example.com.