Issue of February 12, 2012
eds. Joan Schmelz, Caroline Simpson, and Michele Montgomery
This week's issues:
1. When Women Stay Home, it's Not Child Care; When Men Do, it is
From: Chanda Prescod-Weinstein [chandadeepti_at_gmail.com]
I don't see how we're supposed to make progress on family-friendly policies when we can't even get the IRS to admit that it's work when women do it, not just when men do it: http://parenting.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/08/the-census-bureau-counts-fathers-as-child-care
Apparently men should get credit if they bother with a "second shift," but not women. Unbelievable.Back to top.
2. Women In Physics: A Tale Of Limits
From: Physics Today [http://www.physicstoday.org/]
By: Rachel Ivie and Casey Langer Tesfaye
February 2012, page 47
A newly completed survey of 15 000 physicists worldwide reveals that women physicists still do not have equal access to the career-advancing resources and opportunities enjoyed by their male colleagues.Back to top.
3. Affirmative Action Policies Promote Women And Do Not Harm Efficiency
In The Laboratory
From: Waves and Packets, Feb. 4, 2012
The educational attainments of women exceed those of men in most developed countries, yet women continue to lag behind in access to top corporate jobs. Without dismissing the role of discrimination, recent research has implicated a lower preference of women for competition. A report published in Science by Balafoutas and Sutter shows how affirmative action policies can increase the willingness of women to compete without affecting the chances of highly skilled men to succeed and while preserving post-competition cooperation between individuals.
Science Article at: http://www.sciencemag.org/content/335/6068/579Back to top.
4. Climate dream: Inclusion of diverse backgrounds and interests
From: Ed Bertschinger on the Women In Astronomy blog
Recently I've heard female student speakers courageously describe their struggles to find support and encouragement for being different from their peers in interest or culture, not only gender. At my university's annual Martin Luther King, Jr. celebration breakfast today, an undergraduate told how she felt looked down upon at a technical university for majoring in economics. Questions from her peers like "Why aren't you an engineer or scientist?" and "Why would anyone come here to do that?" reinforced her own self-doubt in the classic multiplier of stereotype threat. The impact is largest when there are no peers or role models to provide a positive image of choices like those made by this young woman.
Two weeks ago, at a university-wide diversity summit, an international female graduate student told a similar struggle of fitting in as a double minority - a female engineer with an accent and different cultural background than her peers. She had learned to give and take with the guys, but it was clear that the callouses accompanying a thickened skin increase the academic drag coefficient.
Ideally, each of these students and all others from underrepresented groups could find mentors who provide encouragement and help in dealing with criticism. Unfortunately, we are as far from that ideal as we are from a perfect meritocracy. Meanwhile, individual acts of courage - by students telling their stories, and by staff and faculty offering support to students - may help to stem the losses that otherwise accompany a bad climate dream.Back to top.
5. Diversity of Women Postdocs
From: Chanda Prescod-Weinstein [chandadeepti_at_gmail.com]
Chanda Prescod-Weinstein points out that "the MIT Department of Physics is home to three first year female postdocs who happen to be of African, Mexican and Native American descent, all working on astronomy or physics related to astronomy. I'd be interested to know if any other department has ever accomplished this?"
She brings this up in the context of one of the results from the Women in Astronomy Conference III held in 2009, at which it became clear that the community needs more focus on the issues facing women of color. Chanda points out that statistics indicate "that while the news is good for white women, for Black, Latina and Native American women, nothing has changed in the last 30 years." She adds "I understand that CSWA's mission is to focus on women. It is my hope that this is with the understanding that some of us are also women of color, or queer, or of different levels of physical ability. A remarkable achievement like this [MIT's diverse female postdoc cohort] shouldn't go unmarked. People often say that it's hard to even get one of us because the talent pool is too small. What's happening at MIT physics is an antidote to that argument, and we should advertise it as widely as possible. The fact that it's remarkable at all should merit discussion."Back to top.
6. Student Virtual Forum In Anchorage
From: Kim Coble [kcoble.csu_at_gmail.com]
The AAS has a cool new opportunity for student presentations. Please spread the word.
Thanks, Kim Coble, for the AEB
STUDENT VIRTUAL FORUM IN ANCHORAGE
The AAS Astronomy Education Board (AEB) is pleased to announce an experimental online session at the 220th AAS meeting in Anchorage, Alaska, called the Student Virtual Forum (SVF). Undergraduate students who cannot attend the meeting in person may nevertheless present short oral papers "virtually," that is, from remote locations via the Internet.
Students are invited to submit abstracts for the SVF on any astronomical research that they have conducted, including research in astronomy education or the history of astronomy. Faculty members are encouraged to mentor students in applying to participate. Abstracts should be submitted through the regular abstract form at http://members.aas.org/abstracts be sure to specify topical category 46 (Student Virtual Forum). The deadline for submitting abstracts is March 1, 2012, at 9 p.m. EST; late abstracts will not be considered for the SVF.
Note that a limited number of abstracts can be accepted for the SVF, and if your abstract is accepted, you'll be required to pay a nominal registration fee to present your paper. Applicants will be notified whether their abstract has been accepted for the SVF in mid-March. To give your abstract the best possible shot at acceptance, we recommend you read "Tips for Writing the Abstract of an AAS Meeting Presentation" at http://aas.org/career/writinganabstract Accepted presenters will be required to submit their presentation slides by May 24, 2012, for upload and testing.
Note that the virtual session will be a live online event during the AAS meeting; it will accommodate on-site meeting attendees, online student presenters, and other virtual participants. While there is a fee for students to present papers, there is no fee for audience members to participate in the session remotely online. More information for presenters and instructions for joining the SVF on-site or online will follow.Back to top.
7. Career and Diversity Events at the APS March Meeting
From: WIPHYS, February 9, 2012
Career and Diversity Events at the APS March Meeting
A variety of career and diversity events will be offered at the upcoming APS March Meeting in Boston.
* Networking Reception following Professional Skills Development * Workshop, February 26 * APS Job Expo, February 27-29 * COM/CSWP Diversity Networking Reception, February 28 * CSWP/FIAP Networking Luncheon, February 28 * Lunch with the Experts (for Graduate Students), February 28
Visit the March Meeting's Events amp; Activities site for times and locations. http://www.aps.org/meetings/march/eventsBack to top.
8. Job Opportunities
* NRAO Postdoctoral position, NANOGrav https://careers.nrao.edu ; click on the Scientist Position button
* Assistant or Associate Professor in Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, University of Ontario http://www.apmaths.uwo.ca ; click on the link under News & Announcements on the right side of the page
* Wiess Instructorship in Physics and Astronomy, Rice University http://www.physics.rice.edu/Content.aspx?id=65&linkidentifier=id&itemid=65Back to top.
9. How to Submit to the AASWOMEN newsletter
To submit an item to the AASWOMEN newsletter, including replies to topics, send email to aaswomen_at_aas.org
All material will be posted unless you tell us otherwise, including your email address.
Please remember to replace "_at_" in the e-mail address above.Back to top.
10. How to Subscribe or Unsubscribe to the AASWOMEN newsletter
To subscribe or unsubscribe to the AASWOMEN newsletter, please fill in the required information at:
If you experience any problems, please email itdept_at_aas.orgBack to top.
11. Access to Past Issues
Each annual summary includes an index of topics covered.Back to top.