Stacie Bloom on Leaving a Nonprofit Job to Work in Higher Education


In Chapter 3 of 18 in her 2012 Capture Your Flag interview, Neuroscience Institute Executive Director Stacie Grossman Bloom answers “What New Challenges Are You Facing in Your Career?” Bloom notes the challenges she has faced transitioning out of a relatively small nonprofit and into an 18,000 employee-strong university, NYU. She also details the challenge of understanding the governance and leadership structure of the organization.

Stacie Grossman Bloom is Executive Director for the Neuroscience Institute at the NYU Langone Medical Center. Previously, she was VP and Scientific Director at the New York Academy of Sciences (NYAS) and, before that, held editorial roles at the Journal of Clinical Investigation and Nature Medicine. She earned her BA in chemistry and psychology from the University of Delaware, her PhD in Neurobiology and Cell Biology at Georgetown University and did post-doctoral training in Paul Greengard’s Nobel Laboratory of Molecular & Cellular Neuroscience at Rockefeller University.

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Erik Michielsen: What new challenges are you facing in your career?

Stacie Grossman Bloom: There are a lot of new challenges in this job, I would say understanding how a very large university system works has been an interesting challenge. I was previously working in a small not-for-profit organization, maybe 65 people, all of a sudden, I’m at this medical center, 18,000 people. It’s a very different type of organization, so I’m going from a place where I sort of knew everyone, if I had an HR question, I would walk to HR, there was 2 people working in there. You know, now, it’s a situation where if I have an HR question, I’m sending an email to a vague email address and getting a response from a person who I’ve never met before.

I think also in a very large organization, things move at a different pace, because there are a lot of levels, sort of checkpoints to get through and a lot of policies and procedures, of course. I think also understanding the governance and the—how the leadership is organized at such a big place was a little bit challenging for me coming in. It’s not as simple as a CEO, a COO, a CFO, and some directors and vice presidents, it’s an incredibly large organization with a very diverse and big leadership structure.


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