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Half-Day Responsible Conduct of Research Workshop: Leadership and Communication Skills for Researchers

This training event, as part of the Investigator Series, will provide responsible conduct of research training hours required by National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health grants.  According to one article published by the National Library of Medicine, “the goal of such education is arguably first to promote responsible conduct and, at most secondarily, to decrease research misconduct.” Common topics for RCR trainings include; conflict of interest, research misconduct, human subjects, management, peer review, collaborative science, and mentor-trainee responsibilities.  Talent Development is being asked to specifically address the skill and competencies needed to build healthy mentor-trainee relationships and create a healthy culture in a research team.


  • Participants will learn how to identify their strengths and understand those of each team member, summarize all of those advantages, and then leverage those strengths to benefit the team. 
  • Participants will learn what a Crucial Conversation is, what tends to happen when conversations turn crucial, and a better way to handle these Crucial Conversations in order to turn disagreement into dialogue for improved relationships and results. 
  • Participants will learn strategies to create a culture of open and engaged communication that includes constructive conflict.
  • Participants will be able to identify and locate learning opportunities for further development.

Half-Day Responsible Conduct of Research Workshop: Leadership and Communication Skills for Researchers

Nov. 10 | 12:30 - 4:30 p.m.

University Mall, Room 2104

801 University City Blvd
Blacksburg, VA 24060


Greg Beecher portrait.

Greg A. Beecher

Director of Talent Development

Greg Beecher is powered by the belief that every individual is gifted with talents and purpose.  He strives to create learning opportunities that help to strategically connect individuals, teams, and organizations to a meaningful purpose.  He is passionate about developing people and communication practices that exceed individual and organizational goals.   

Greg possesses 30+ years of experience in higher education, human resource management, and consulting non-profit organizations.  Greg holds a BS in Communication and Psychology from Indiana Wesleyan University, an MA in Organizational and Professional Communication Development from Ball State University, and a PhD in Industrial Organizational Psychology from Grand Canyon University.  He possesses SPHR and SHRM-SCP human resource certifications and is certified to facilitate and interpret various assessment tools on change, conflict, emotional intelligence, and personalities.  He currently serves as the Director of Talent Development at Virginia Tech.

Greg is a husband, father to four amazing kids, dog lover, passionate about the arts, educator, and lifelong learner who desires to develop communities.  If not doing or enjoying one of the above, you can typically find him doing or planning landscape gardening projects

Michelle Carter portrait.

Michelle Carter

Talent and Organizational Development Specialist

Michelle joined the Division of Human Resources at Virginia Tech in February 2023 as a talent and organizational development specialist. Her primary project is executing the Leadership Development program. The first cohort-based experience, called Leadership Excellence, launched in August 2023. In addition to this, she is part of a team that analyzes, develops, executes, and assesses training and development programs for groups and individuals.

Her first role at Virginia Tech was in the Office for Inclusion and Diversity as the director of Diversity Engagement. Before joining Virginia Tech, she was part of the career services department at the Virginia Commonwealth College of Engineering. Michelle served as an instructor for a professional development, internship, and co-op classes. In that role, she developed an interest in adult learning, inclusive pedagogy and universal design for learning.

Prior to joining Virginia Commonwealth University, she worked as a non-profit executive in rural southwestern Virginia and taught at a small business college.

She earned a master's degree from West Virginia University and undergraduate degree from Fairmont State University.  She lives in Blacksburg and shares her life with her human family and one ornery cat.

Sarah Dreieer portrait.

Sarah Dreier

Talent Development and Creative Engagement Specialist


As a dedicated Talent Development and Creative Engagement Specialist at Virginia Tech, Sarah Dreier's transformative approach has been instrumental in employees' learning success since she joined in August 2019. In 2022, her role expanded to Talent Development and Creative Engagement Specialist, showcasing her commitment to the holistic growth of individuals and teams. 

Sarah's journey began as a learning and organizational development consultant at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro before her arrival at Virginia Tech.

She achieved a bachelor's degree in business management and is currently pursuing a Master's in Education, specializing in instructional design and technology. Her commitment to development extends to certifications from esteemed institutions such as SHRM for Human Resources, as well as Gallup, the Center for Leadership Studies, Crucial Learning, and the Myers-Briggs Company for training and coaching.

An avid learner and creative enthusiast, Sarah carries these values into her personal pursuits, both within and beyond the realm of talent development. She enjoys walks with her dog, spending time with family and friends engaged in arts, reading, and the beach when she can get to it.

About the Series

The Division of Scholarly Integrity and Research Compliance’s Investigator Series provides researchers with a peer-to-peer forum to share ethical considerations that they make during the design, conduct and dissemination of their research. This style of learning opens the door to new perspectives and meaningful conversations in the pursuit of research excellence.