Announcing the School of Medicine Sponsored Programs Office reorganization

Following the retirement of Carolyn Marlow, former Director of the Sponsored Programs Office (SPO), SPO has divided its responsibilities into two departments to enhance the administrative support it provides to the School of Medicine: the SPO and the Office of Professional Service Contracts and Affiliations (OPSCA).

 Announcing the School of Medicine Sponsored Programs Office reorganization click to enlarge Sherry Whitaker
 Announcing the School of Medicine Sponsored Programs Office reorganization click to enlarge Erin Edwards

The Sponsored Programs Office (SPO) operates with a focus on pre-award research administration.

The SPO is responsible for the review, approval and submission of the School of Medicine grant proposals to the NIH and to all foundations and non-profit organizations with delegated signature authority on behalf of the Chancellor.  SPO typically processes approximately 50% of the proposals for the University to external funding agencies.  Now under the leadership of Sherry Whitaker, SPO will work with the School of Medicine units to ensure proposals are prepared and submitted in accordance with policies of the funding agency, the University, and federal and state regulations. Sherry previously served as SPO’s assistant director and has over twenty years of research administration and university business management experience.  Sherry is a certified research administrator (CRA) and graduate of Radford University, College of Business and Economics.  She brings to this role a wealth of knowledge of federal and state guidelines, regulatory matters, and research administration best practices. 

The Office of Professional Service Contracts and Affiliations (OPSCA) has been established to support clinical activities, professional service contracts, and affiliation agreements.

The School of Medicine generates over 80% of the University’s contractual activity associated with professional services and student rotations and affiliations. Recognizing the specialized administrative, budgetary, legal, and regulatory issues associated with these activities, the Office of Professional Service Contracts and Affiliations (OPSCA) was created to facilitate the review and execution of these contracts. Previously administered by SPO, these contracts protect the interest and integrity of the School of Medicine while allowing the faculty and staff to fulfill its mission of providing leadership and excellence in the interrelated areas of patient care, research, and education. Erin Edwards was recently named the director of OPSCA. A graduate of UNC School of Law, Erin has over five years’ experience negotiating agreements on behalf of the University.

In the upcoming months, updated websites will provide more information on the offices and their staffs.

Contact Information:

Sherry Whitaker, Director SPO                                                                 Erin Edwards, JD, Director OPSCA

sherry_whitaker@med.unc.edu                                                               erin_edwards@med.unc.edu

1140-G Bioinformatics Building, CB 9525                               1140-C Bioinformatics Building, CB 9525

919-962-3950

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