Am I Brave Enough?

Rebecca Ludwig, Ph.D., R.T.(R)(QM), FASRT
Feb. 27, 2015

The Encouragement Needed

Rebecca Ludwig
Dr. Sal Martino was the first colleague who inspired me to engage in research, although he probably doesn’t know that. I was sharing my thoughts and ideas with him in a casual conversation, and he became really excited and told me I should do research to investigate those ideas. His interest made me feel brave enough to take those first steps. Once I started engaging in research, Dr. Nina Kowalczyk became a mentor to me. She always listened to my thoughts and helped me clarify the question I wanted to answer. Her experience in research provided me with insight on how to find out what I wanted to know. Dr. Kowalczyk often provided very helpful suggestions as she is very experienced in research design and statistical analyses.

Research as an Interest and Challenge

Research gives me the opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to the profession and helps validate our important contributions to health care. From a personal perspective, it keeps my work interesting and challenging. I often feel rewarded because it validates my intuition. Engaging in research has opened many new doors for me and has given me the opportunity to work with many amazing people I would not have otherwise met.

Grant Provides Boost of Confidence

Receiving a research grant from ASRT significantly boosted my confidence in conducting research. The experience made me realize I had a genuine passion for understanding more about practice issues in our discipline, which shaped my future research agenda. My interest in advanced practice was born, which ultimately led me to create master’s degree programs for radiologist assistants and for advanced nuclear medicine. That effort resulted in appointments on various committees and councils. I had the privilege of helping shape the direction of our profession. My career path would likely have been much different if I had not engaged in research.