Issue of September 4, 2009
eds. Joan Schmelz, Caroline Simpson & Michele Montgomery
This week's issues:
*** FOLLOWING POSITIONS TAKEN FROM WIPHYS ***
1. Some Thoughts on Women in Academia
From: Rosemary Mardling [Rosemary.Mardling_at_sci.monash.edu.au]
I am an astrophysicist at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. In Australia there are four teaching/research academic levels: Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, Associate Professor and Professor. Over all levels in our Faculty of Science, 17% are women, and at the top two levels, this drops even further to 9% (total staff 112).
The topic has been discussed to death with no resolution: women with families or who plan to have families feel they do not want to subject themselves to the huge stresses associated with academic competition at the same time as coping with family life. The academic system (like any system) has evolved to suit the majority. There are benchmarks for how many publications and grants one should have to be worthy of any particular academic level (or to simply enter the system in the first place), and these of course are set by the majority. In my Faculty at least, it seems that a large fraction of the male academic staff (including young guys) have partners who stay at home or work part-time. Such people have an enormous advantage, especially brain- clutter-wise!
Try as I may, I cannot think of a solution to the problem. Is it reasonable to ask that our family status be taken into account during the bean-counting exercise performed by appointment and promotion committees? As a male colleague once said to me: why should I do your work for you? And many women colleagues without kids reasonably ask this question even more loudly! While Monash does now ask committees to take family status into account, I don't really think it is in practice.
In my opinion, the only way things will change is if (1): more *men* start to feel that it is very unhealthy and unfair for the system to be so biased towards men, and start making a noise about it, and (2): more men experience what it is *really* like to run a family (and not just claim that picking up the kids from school and emptying the dishwasher constitute real involvement). This in turn will affect the benchmarks, and will not disadvantage those without family responsibilities (in fact it will help them).
While it is great to have an IAU resolution encouraging the support of female astronomers, I don't really see how this will change things practically until there is real cultural change in the broader community.Back to top.
2. Input Needed for Website for Young Women in Science
From: WIPHYS, August 28, 2009
The website "Under the Microscope" is aimed at encouraging young women in science. The site includes a plea for stories, advice, and tips on how to succeed from women scientists on their "About Us" page, linked from the home page at http://underthemicroscope.com .
(thanks to David Ehrenstein, Focus editor, APS)Back to top.
3. AWIS Receives ADVANCE Grant
From: WIPHYS, September 2, 2009
August 31, 2009. The Association for Women in Science (AWIS) has received an ADVANCE grant from NSF to partner with discipline societies to improve recognition for women and minorities in STEM. This grant will fund a new project: "Advancing Ways of Awarding Recognition in Disciplinary Societies (AWARDS)," designed to create a sustainable framework for assuring progress towards more equitable rewards and recognition for women and members of underrepresented groups in a wide range of scientific communities. The complete press release can be read at http://www.awis.org/ .Back to top.
4. Century of Physics Timeline Posters
From: WIPHYS, September 3, 2009
This dramatic timeline that depicts the past hundred years of physics in a set of 11 posters was designed for the APS Centennial in 1999. A few sets are still available for purchase. To order, please download the Century of Physics Timeline Poster order form at http://www.aps.org/programs/outreach/resources/timeline.cfm .
Price is $50 (US and Canada only) including shipping and handling. International orders are calculated individually; please email timeline_at_aps.org for details before ordering.Back to top.
5. Professional Skills Development Workshops (Astronomy)
From: Hannah Jang-Condell [hannah_at_astro.umd.edu]
Coaching in the Art of Strategic Negotiation
In conjuction with the Women in Astronomy and Space Science 2009 Conference, a professional skills development workshop is planned for the afternoon of Tuesday, October 20. Participants will develop negotiation skills through interactive means including case studies, personal assessments, and role playing. The workshop is open to postdocs and early faculty. Although the workshop is designed with the needs of women scientists in mind, persons of all backgrounds are welcome to apply. Workshop attendance is limited to 40.
For more information and to sign up, go to http://wia2009.gsfc.nasa.gov/career_workshop/ and click on the link "Sign up for Career Workshop." [or visit http://womeninastronomy.blogspot.com/2009/09/career-development-workshop.html -- eds.]
I attended a very similar workshop put together by the APS [see next item -- eds.] at the last March meeting and let me tell you, it was EXTREMELY useful. Quite an eye-opening experience. However, the field of astronomy has its own unique set of issues, so having a more tailored workshop should be extremely helpful, especially for those of us on the job market.Back to top.
6. Professional Skills Development Workshops (APS)
From: WIPHYS, September 1, 2009
The American Physical Society will offer one-day workshops for women post-docs and women faculty in physics on February 12 (Washington, DC) and again on March 14 (Portland, Oregon), in association with the 2010 APS annual meetings.
Workshops will be limited in size for optimal benefits. There will be separate sessions as follows:
Friday, February 12: women post docs and tenured women faculty Sunday, March 14: women post docs and tenure-track women faculty
Women of color are especially encouraged to apply.
The workshops will offer professional training on effective negotiation, communication and leadership skills, as well as a special opportunity for networking at the reception afterwards. There will be separate sessions for post-docs and women faculty.
All participants may receive a stipend of up to $850 towards hotel and travel expenses. Details are now posted at www.aps.org/programs/women/workshops/skills/index.cfm. To ensure maximum interaction, the workshops will be limited in size.
Support for these workshops has been received from the National Science Foundation.Back to top.
7. Astronomy & Astrophysics Prize Postdoctoral Fellowship
From: Laurelyn Celone [laurelyn.celone_at_yale.edu]
The Yale Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics invites applications for the YCAA Postdoctoral Prize Fellowship in Astronomy and Astrophysics, to be awarded to a young scientist of exceptional ability who will have received her/his Ph.D. by June 2010 in observational, theoretical, or experimental astronomy or astrophysics/cosmology. The Fellowship is for three years (renewed annually subject to performance), and offers competitive salary ($60,000), benefits, and research funds.
Conveniently located between New York City and Boston, Yale offers a lively intellectual environment and access to world-class astronomical facilities, including the Keck, WIYN and SMARTS telescopes, and to Chilean telescopes through collaboration with the Univ. de Chile, as well as High-Performance Computing facilities. The YCAA Prize Postdoctoral Fellow will be free to carry out his/her own research program, although preference will be given to research interests that align with those of the Yale astrophysics faculty (see www.yale.edu/ycaa/membership.html ). Active research at Yale includes solar astrophysics, nuclear astrophysics, astrometry, star formation, stellar evolution, galactic structure, black holes, local group galaxies, high-energy astrophysics, multiwavelength surveys (QUEST, GOODS, COSMOS, MUSYC, SDSS), active galaxies and blazars, galaxy evolution, galaxy clusters, large-scale structure, gravitational lensing, dark matter, dark energy, and cosmology.
Applicants should send their curriculum vitae, bibliography, and a brief description of the anticipated research program by November 8, 2009 to the address above. Email submission as a pdf is strongly preferred. Candidates should also arrange for at least 3 letters of recommendation to arrive by November 8. Fellowship candidates will automatically be considered for any open postdoctoral positions at Yale in their fields of interest, unless they ask to be considered only for the YCAA Prize Postdoctoral Fellowship. Yale is an Affirmative Action/ Equal Opportunity Employer, and we particularly encourage applications from women and members of minority groups.
Medical insurance, maternity leave (unpaid), dental insurance offered at $43.30 a person.
Submit Applications To: pamela.bosward_at_yale.edu
Attention: Pamela Bosward, Executive Assistant to the Chair, YCAA Prize Postdoctoral Fellowship Selection Committee Yale University, Department of Physics P.O. Box 208120 New Haven, CT 06520-8120 USA
(Yale University, Department of Physics)
(Yale Center for Astronomy & Astrophysics)
(Department of Astronomy)
Email Submission Address: pamela.bosward_at_yale.edu Email Inquiries: daisuke.nagai_at_yale.edu . The closing date for receipt of applications: 11/08/2009Back to top.
8. MIT Pappalardo Fellowships in Physics
From: WIPHYS, September 4, 2009
Nominations for the 2010-2013 MIT Pappalardo Fellowships in Physics competition are open through Friday, September 11, 2009. Candidates for the Pappalardo Fellowships cannot apply themselves, but must be sponsored by a faculty member or senior researcher within physics, astronomy or related fields. Nominations should be submitted on-line via the Pappalardo Fellowships web site, and do NOT require letters of reference at this time.
Please visit the link below to submit your nomination form: http://web.mit.edu/physics/research/pappalardofellowshipsprogram/competition_10.html
Note that nominees must be young women or men of exceptional ability who currently have or will have received a doctoral degree in physics, astronomy or related fields by September 1, 2010. Should you need further information, please contact the program's administrator, Ms. Carol Breen, at breen_at_mit.edu.Back to top.
9. Two Tenure-Track Positions, Dennison University
From: WIPHYS, September 3, 2009
The Denison University Department of Physics and Astronomy invites applications for 2 tenure track assistant professor positions preferably starting Fall, 2010, although a later start may be considered under exceptional circumstances. Ph.D. required. We are seeking candidates vitally interested in teaching physics at both the beginning and advanced levels including laboratory-based courses. The successful applicant is expected to carry out active research with the involvement of undergraduates. Substantial start-up funds for research will be available, and Denison supports generous professional and family leave programs.
Denison University is a highly-selective liberal arts college of 2100 students, located in Granville, Ohio, 30 minutes from Columbus. The department consists of seven faculty, a technical assistant, and an academic administrative assistant. Facilities include excellent equipment for both teaching and research, first class on-site experimental labs, a link to the Ohio Supercomputer, an observatory, a planetarium, and a well-equipped machine shop. Additional information may be obtained from our web site at http://www.denison.edu/physics/ .
Applicants should submit vita, graduate school transcripts, a description of teaching interests and experience, a proposed research plan including the means for involving undergraduates, and three (3) letters of reference online at https://employment.denison.edu .
Applications received by October 15, 2009 will receive full consideration; applications may be accepted until the position is filled. Denison's commitment to foster a diverse community is central to our liberal arts mission, therefore candidates from traditionally underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.Back to top.
10. Faculty Position, University of Oregon
From: WIPHYS, September 4, 2009
The Department of Physics at the University of Oregon invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position in the areas of theoretical particle physics, astrophysics, or cosmology. We anticipate an appointment at the level of assistant professor.
Candidates will be considered in all areas of theoretical particle physics, including the physics of the standard model and beyond, astro-particle physics including dark matter and dark energy, and theoretical cosmology. The successful candidate will have a PhD in Physics or related discipline, demonstrate a strong record of research, and participate effectively in teaching at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Applicants should submit a letter of application, curriculum vita, list of publications, and a brief statement of research interests. They should also arrange to have a minimum of three letters of reference sent directly to us. Applications and letters of recommendation should be sent to theorysearch_at_uoregon.edu ; PDF format for all documents is strongly preferred.
The position begins in Fall 2010. Review of applications will begin November 15, 2009. We shall consider applications until the position is filled. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply. For further information, please visit http://physics.uoregon.edu or contact the search committee at theorysearch_at_uoregon.edu. The successful applicant will support and enhance a diverse learning and working environment.
An equal-opportunity, affirmative-action institution committed to cultural diversity and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.Back to top.
11. How to Submit, Subscribe, or Unsubscribe to AASWOMEN
[Please remember to replace "_at_" in the below e-mail addresses.]
To submit to AASWOMEN: send email to aaswomen_at_aas.org
All material sent to that address will be posted unless you tell us otherwise (including your email address).
To subscribe or unsubscribe to AASWOMEN go to
and fill out the form.
If you experience any problems, please email itdept_at_aas.orgBack to top.
12. Access to Past Issues of AASWOMEN
Past issues of AASWOMEN are available at
Each annual summary includes an index of topics covered.Back to top.