Overseas Chinese Association for Institutional Research

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Greetings from 2022-2023 Immediate Past Chair

Dear OCAIR friends and colleagues,

It has been a wonderful experience to lead OCAIR during the term of 2022-2023. I would also like to thank all of our OCAIR members for your unwavering trust and support during my term. It is through your valuable contributions and active engagement that OCAIR continues to thrive and make a meaningful impact in our professional field and in each other’s lives.

I must acknowledge the remarkable individuals who make up our incredible steering committee: Henry, Helen, Jun, Kelly, Qing, Enyu, Lucy, Xiqian, Amy, Mengyun, Qingmin, Ting, and Hongxia. Your dedication, passion, and hard work have been invaluable in driving OCAIR forward. It has been an absolute honor and a joy to work with each of you.

I am proud to reflect on the remarkable journey we have embarked on together. Our collective efforts have propelled OCAIR to new heights, fostering growth, knowledge-sharing, and community engagement within our organization.

I would like to emphasize the wealth of expertise and knowledge present within our OCAIR community. Throughout the year, we organized many webinars and virtual panels, providing a platform for our members and other experts to share their insights and expertise. These events have proven to be immensely valuable in fostering dialogue and enhancing our collective understanding of institutional research. I extend a special thanks to Kelly Lin and Enyu Zhou, who have dedicated their time and effort to organizing and hosting these outstanding webinars, despite their busy schedules.

In addition to the webinars, our member-at-large, Jun Xiang, has played a vital role in delivering various learning and career development opportunities to our members. Jun has consistently shared valuable information through the monthly email blast, “This Month in IR,” and has warmly welcomed new members to the OCAIR community. Thank you, Jun, for your outstanding service as our member-at-large.

In the fall of 2023, we successfully conducted an AIR conference proposal workshop. Six workshop participants submitted their proposals, which were reviewed by experienced OCAIR members who provided guidance and editing feedback. Almost all of the proposals were accepted by AIR, reflecting the workshop’s positive impact on our members’ individual growth and increasing the visibility of OCAIR within the wider IR community.

I am delighted to announce that our fundraising efforts have met with great success. Many of you may recall the excitement surrounding Yingxia’s donation matching challenge on the final day of 2022, and together we reached our ambitious fundraising goal. The generosity of our members has allowed us to secure vital resources that can support our programs for two years.

Recognizing the importance of an engaging online presence, the OCAIR steering committee has undertaken the task of revising the OCAIR website. Our goal was to create a platform that not only attracts new members and potential sponsors but also better engages our current members. Thanks to the generous donations from our members, we were able to hire a contractor, and the new website is now live for visitors to explore.

The updated website will also play a crucial role in attracting potential sponsors. OCAIR has never pursued sponsorship opportunities before, so last year I worked with the steering committee members and some friends with such experience to create a new sponsorship program. This program aims to secure better funding for OCAIR’s programs in the future and reduce our reliance on member donations. OCAIR Steering Committee members will start exploring sponsorship opportunities.

Another key event on our OCAIR calendar is the annual virtual conference. I would like to express my gratitude to Henry and Enyu for their outstanding efforts in organizing this conference in March 2023. We are also thankful for the valuable contributions of our members who served on the review committee and the wonderful talks given by our presenters.

The most recent OCAIR activity is the release of our annual newsletter, which will be renamed to “OCAIR Annual” in future years. Our dedicated editors, Mengyun and Qingmin, have worked diligently over the past few months. I am confident that anyone who reads it will be impressed by the exceptional articles contributed by OCAIR members and the visually appealing and professional design.

There are many people to thank, and many events to elaborate on, but due to time constraints, I will stop here. Please know that your involvement and efforts are greatly appreciated and have made an impact on OCAIR.

In closing, I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to each and every member of OCAIR. I am truly honored to have had the opportunity to lead OCAIR, and I am immensely grateful for the trust you have placed in me. I extend my best wishes to Helen as she assumes the role of Chair. I have no doubt that Helen and the new leadership team will continue to serve our community with utmost dedication, and I pledge my unwavering support to them.

Please continue your active involvement in OCAIR, as your contributions will shape the future of our organization.

Yang Zhang