Friday, October 12, 2012

AASWomen for October 12, 2012

AAS Committee on the Status of Women
Issue of October 12, 2012
eds. Caroline Simpson, Michele Montgomery, Daryl Haggard, and Nick Murphy

This week's issues:

1. AASWomen Subscribers Top 1000

2. Women in Astronomy Blogspot

3. From the Twitterverse

4. More on Gender Bias

5. Astronomical Society of Australia's 2012 Women in Astronomy Workshop

6. FabFems Spotlight

7. Job Opportunities

8. How to Submit to the AASWomen Newsletter

9. How to Subscribe or Unsubscribe to the AASWomen Newsletter

10. Access to Past Issues of the AASWomen Newsletter

1. AASWomen subscribers top 1000
From: AASWomen editors

We've broken the 1000 mark for subscribers to the newsletter! Thanks to all of you who forwarded our invitation issue to other members of the community.

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2. Women in Astronomy Blogspot

This week in the Women in Astronomy blog, guest blogger Hannah Fakhouri, a graduate student in astrophysics at UC Berkeley write about being a Graduate Student Mom and shares lessons she has learned; John Johnson, professor of Astronomy at Caltech writhe about his struggles with Imposter Syndrome, and Hannah Jang-Condell writes about a controversial letter of 'advice' to graduate students that has been making the social-media rounds this week.

- Graduate Student Mom by Hannah Fakhouri Greetings! My name is Hannah and I'm guest blogging this week about being a graduate student and a mom: I am a seventh year PhD student in (astro)physics and I have a three month old son. [...] I want to share with you a few lessons that I have learned in my journey thus far; they are things that I have always known, but now know much more fully...

- Imposter Syndrome by John Johnson I remember waking up in a cold sweat one night in early 2010, about six months after I joined the faculty at Caltech. I woke up to the terrifying realization that I didn't have a contingency plan for my family for when I would inevitably be either let go or denied tenure. Erin woke up wondering what was wrong with me and I told her that I was sorry, but it was only a matter of time before my colleagues discovered how little I know about astronomy. They were going to discover that they made a mistake in hiring me as a professor...

- On the detection of interstellar boron sulfide: a response, by Hannah Jang-Condell Many of you have probably seen this letter making the rounds on Facebook, or even appearing on AstroBetter. While I can't verify the provenance of the letter, it's dismaying to see the pressure being put on the students in that astronomy department to buy into a workaholic culture. Not all the advice is bad, but there are some real stinkers in there.

So, here's my own letter of advice...

[There are also some interesting conversations about the original letter, and what kind of culture do we want? on the Astronomers Group on Facebook -- eds]

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3. From the Twitterverse
From: AAS CSWA twitter feed, managed by Nancy Morrison

To achieve gender equality in science, shift men’s perceptions of what is professionally acceptable: #ScienceCareers Retweeted by AAS CSWA

AWIS congratulates 2012 Kavli prize selection committee for moving beyond implicit bias: 1st female awardees ever Retweeted from AWIS by AAS CSWA

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4. More on Gender Bias
From: Michele Montgomery []

From the Cosmic Variance blog by Sean Carroll:

"Admitting that scientists demonstrate gender bias shouldn’t make us forget that other kinds of bias exist, or that people other than scientists exhibit them. In a couple of papers (one, two), Katherine Milkman, Modupe Akinola, and Dolly Chugh have investigated how faculty members responded to email requests from prospective students asking for a meeting. The names of the students were randomly shuffled, and chosen to give some implication that the students were male or female, and also whether they were Caucasian, Black, Hispanic, Indian, or Chinese.

And the inquiries most likely to receive positive responses were the ones that came from … white males! You should pause a minute to collect yourself after hearing this shocking news."

Full posting at

And a second article on the same study at

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5. Astronomical Society of Australia's 2012 Women in Astronomy Workshop
From: Astronomer's Facebook Group -- Katie Mack

In case you missed the meeting (online or in person), I've gathered up the tweets from the Astronomical Society of Australia's 2012 Women in Astronomy Workshop ( ). I think the meeting covered some really important topics for the community (not just in Australia, and not just women either).

Day 1: Day 2:

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6. FabFems Spotlight
From: National Girls Collaborative Project

The FabFems Spotlight is a new monthly feature highlighting inspiring women from the FabFems Role Model directory. There are over 100 FabFems profiles in the database and this number is growing. FabFems are enthusiastic about the science and technology work they do and want to inspire a future generation of FabFems. Visit FabFems to search profiles, connect with role models, and find resources on career pathways.

If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a FabFem, visit:

[There are currently only three role models for Astronomy and Space Science in this database; we're underrepresented! -- eds.]

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7. Job Opportunities

* Tenure-track, Physics, Lafayette College

* Public Information Officer, National Radio Astronomy Observatory

* Tenure-track Assistant Professor, Astronomy/Astrophysics, Wheaton College, Massachusetts

* Cosmology Postdoctoral Fellow, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

* Senior Lecturer, Astrophysics, Stockholm University (approximately equivalent to Senior Lecturer (UK) or Associate Professor (US))

* Faculty Position, Astrophysics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

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8. How to Submit to the AASWOMEN newsletter

To submit an item to the AASWOMEN newsletter, including replies to topics, send email to

All material will be posted unless you tell us otherwise, including your email address.

When submitting a job posting for inclusion in the newsletter, please include a one-line description and a link to the full job posting.

Please remember to replace "_at_" in the e-mail address above.

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9. How to Subscribe or Unsubscribe to the AASWOMEN newsletter

Join AAS Women List by email:

Send email to from the address you want to have subscribed. You can leave the subject and message blank if you like.

Be sure to follow the instructions in the confirmation email. (Just reply back to the email list)

To unsubscribe by email:

Send email to from the address you want to have UNsubscribed. You can leave the subject and message blank if you like.

To join or leave AASWomen via web, or change your membership settings:

You will have to create a Google Account if you do not already have one, using

Google Groups Subscribe Help:

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10. Access to Past Issues

Each annual summary includes an index of topics covered.


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