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Dr. Ramon Goings is an Assistant Professor in the Language, Literacy, and Culture interdisciplinary doctoral program at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

Goings is a member of the third ARC Network Virtual Visiting Scholar (VVS) cohort. The VVS program provides a unique opportunity for select scholars across disciplines to pursue research meta-analysis, synthesis, and big data curation on topics crucial to STEM faculty equity.

He first heard about the program when his institution’s grants office forwarded him the information. “The program aligned with my past work, and with my mission as a person and as a researcher, and the application process itself was straightforward and not bureaucratic at all.”

Going has a background in K-12 education, working as a music education and special education teacher before moving into academia. “I always wanted to figure out how I could have the biggest impact,” he says.

“Faculty members are creating the ideas that are implemented in practice. I thought I could help by challenging and expanding the context for that creation.”

His research interests are centered on exploring the academic and social experiences of gifted/high-achieving Black males PK-PhD, diversifying the educator workforce in K-12 and higher education, and investigating the contributions of historically Black colleges and universities to education and society.

For his VVS research, Goings examined how race, ethnicity, and gender is explored in research on STEM contingent faculty. Contingent faculty have always been a part of university life, but the coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the practice, given the resulting salary reductions and hiring freezes and the use of contingent faculty as a price saving vehicle. Additionally, faculty of color are more likely to be in contingent positions than tenure-track positions, and Goings was interested in what the literature said about best practices to support them. He found that, across time and disciplines, very few of the studies he analyzed explicitly mentioned race or gender.

Goings hopes that his work will help people realize race and gender need to be talked about in research. “We need to be more mindful about disaggregating data and we need to be more specific. Best practices are not best practices for everyone.”

Goings sees many benefits from participating in the VVS program, such as demonstrating an ability to get research funded, which can help with promotion and tenure, and opportunities for collaboration with the VVS network of scholars.

“The connections you build with other scholars is great, and the research advisory board had great suggestions for my project moving forward at our regular meetings,” he says. “It’s refreshing to have the flexibility to do a project in the way you envision, without restrictions or red tape.”
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