Amber Stark

SIOP Foundation: The Power of Donors to Change I-O Psychology

For 25 years, the SIOP Foundation has been furthering the field of I-O psychology through awards, grants, and scholarships. Although award applicants and winners are essential, donors make it possible for these recognition opportunities to be provided every year. For most who regularly contribute, donating is so much more than giving back.

“My career is built on the same three pillars I believe drive SIOP: education, research, and practice,” said regular Foundation donor and SIOP Fellow Dr. Rick Jacobs. “The SIOP Foundation has been instrumental in helping students, faculty, and I-O professionals in their quest to learn, understand, and apply our findings through scholarships and grants as well as a never-ending search for ways to advance our field through wide-ranging advocacy of our discipline.”

He continues, “I owe so much to our discipline and SIOP. I feel my career has been blessed in many ways, and much is due to all the hard work of our members, all pulling together for the success of I-O.  Giving back, both financially and with my time and effort, makes me feel a part of the Foundation’s process. Watching the progress of our next generation and those that follow them make a difference in the world of work is incredibly rewarding.”

Donor and SIOP Fellow Dr. Betsy Shoenfelt shares a similar sentiment. 

“I believe it is important to recognize the amazing accomplishments of my SIOP colleagues in teaching, practice, and research,” she said. “Frequently, the work of I-O psychologists is behind the scenes, and others are not aware of the remarkable things we do. The SIOP Foundation awards highlight innovative and impactful I-O work. The Foundation awards provide much deserved recognition for the award winners and inspiration for the rest of us to achieve greater heights. It is rewarding to me to contribute to the support of the best work of I-O psychologists.”

SIOP Fellow Dr. Wayne Cascio turns to the SIOP Foundation Annual Report to help explain how he thinks the Foundation transforms the field:

“According to the SIOP Foundation’s 2020 Annual Report, ‘The mission of the SIOP Foundation is to connect donors with I-O psychology professionals to create smarter workplaces. We do it with endowments and term gifts that fund grants, scholarships, and awards.’ To translate and link research and practice–particularly in ways that are timely, relevant, and actionable–the Foundation established the Horizon Project, which generated three top priorities: (1) Leadership – development and selection of future leaders who can succeed in a highly volatile, rapidly changing and uncertain environment; (2) Inclusion and Diversity; and (3) New Ways of Working (including the impact of technology on work and the workforce as seen in AI, robotics, telework and global connectivity, etc.). Grants in these areas, along with the more recent initiative, Anti-Racism Grants aimed at enlarging our understanding of racism in the workplace, its causes, and its reduction, enable SIOP to take its rightful place as a leader in making workplaces everywhere more effective and more inclusive so that employees can thrive.”

From his personal perspective, Cascio adds, “As a Foundation donor, I think about all of the dedicated I-O psychologists whose work has contributed to the development of our field and to its admirable standing today. I feel a strong obligation to contribute to the future development of our field and to sharing some of the wealth it has enabled me to generate as a scientist-practitioner.”

The SIOP Foundation continues to offer a place where people at all different points in their career can support one another. The assistance provided by donors allows innovation to continue at a pace that can keep up with the demand from society. Learn more about becoming a donor here.  

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