Issue of March 8, 2013
eds. Caroline Simpson, Michele Montgomery, Daryl Haggard, and Nick Murphy
This week's issues:
1. CSWA seeking new committee members
From: Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy [aaswomen_at_aas.org]
The Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy (CSWA) will be appointing a few new members in June. Terms are for three years. If you are interested in serving, please send an email with information about yourself (guided by the questions below) to aaswomen_at_aas.org.
For more information about the Committee, see our webpage at http://www.aas.org/cswa . For an example of recent work, look over the Strategic Plan from 2009 which has guided the committee's efforts lately:
1) What activities are you / have you been involved in that are relevant to CSWA efforts?
2) What aspects of the CSWA efforts would you particularly be interested in getting involved in and what are some specific ways you could contribute?
3) What kind of time commitment would you be able to give to the committee?Back to top.
2. Meg Urry Elected President of the AAS
From: Michele Montgomery [montgomery_at_physics.ucf.edu]
Meg Urry, Physics professor at Yale, has been elected president of the AAS. She begins her two-year term in June 2014 and she will spend the next year as president-elect to prepare for her term. Meg Urry has been an advocate for leadership of women in the science community, especially in astronomy.
To read a blog of the story in the Yale Daily News, please seeBack to top.
3. Women in Science: Challenges and Opportunities
From: Laura Trouille via womeninastronomy.blogspot.com
AASWomen mentioned a thoughtful, short (< 5 minute) video in this Friday's newsletter. It contains a few nuggets of wisdom I wanted to highlight, to help kick off the week on the right foot.
The video is a compilation of highlights from a roundtable discussion at McGill University with four prominent women scientists: Drs. Brenda Milner, Rima Rozen, Jane Stewart, and Victoria Kaspi (an astronomer).
The conversation touches on topics from work-life balance to mentoring to impostor syndrome. I appreciate the candor with which the women speak. For example, on the topic of self confidence, Dr. Kaspi described, "I know when I was young I spent an awful amount of time wondering - Do I belong here? Should I be doing physics? I wish i hadn't wasted all that energy because there's so much interesting work out there to do."
To read more, please seeBack to top.
4. (Re)starting the Discussion about Hiring Practices
From: David Helfand and Laura Troullie via womeninastronomy.blogspot.com
Many of us received the following email from the AAS, containing a letter from David Helfand (AAS president) about hiring practices. I thought I'd repost it here, to provide a space for discussion about this topic.
What do you think?
Should we revamp our letter of recommendation system? Should we set a deadline for faculty positions as we do for postdocs (Feb 15)? Should departments cut down on the number of in-person campus interviews? How can we create a more sustainable relationship between the number of PhDs and the job opportunities available? What support should we be providing to better prepare our PhDs for the full range of interesting careers?
To read Dr. Helfand's letter and participate in this discussion, please seeBack to top.
5. First time away from the kids? Whoop it up!
From: Evgenya Shkolnik via womeninastronomy.blogspot.com
Today’s guest blogger is Evgenya Shkolnik. Evgenya is a tenure-track astronomer at Lowell Observatory, where she studies exoplanets, young low-mass stars, and star-planet interactions. She also is the mother of three young children: Reuben (age 6), Sima (age 4), Leona (age 1.8). Below is an email exchange Evgenya had recently with her friend Kim, a geophysicist.
I need advice/help from a veteran. In two weeks, I'll be heading out to Dublin for a week-long conference and leaving my kids for the first time ever. I'm not too concerned about Sam but I'm worried about how Beatrix is going to deal with my absence. She's almost 2 so won't really understand that I'm just temporarily away. How have your littlest ones coped when you've been away? Any tips? Colin will be with them and I've got my Mom coming out to stay while I'm away so I'm hoping that offers enough distraction. Also, Beatrix still nurses a few times a day so I'm worried that my absence will be traumatizing. And, how do you personally cope with being away from your kids for extended periods? I'm missing them already and I haven't even left yet!! I think I'm going to need therapy after this! Any words of wisdom, or consoling, are greatly appreciated.
All the best, Kim
For Evgenya Shkolnik's response, please seeBack to top.
6. Feathering the Intellectual Nest
From: Nicolle Zellner via womeninastronomy.blogspot.com
A few weeks ago, for almost 48 hours, I didn’t grade, read, or think (much) about department issues. Crazy, huh? The semester had just started and I should have been preparing new class lecture notes, finishing up projects from the past semester, or otherwise trying to “pre-organize” so that I don’t feel like I’m putting out proverbial fires every day over the next few months. But that weekend? Forget it. That weekend was for me - and a few of my girlfriends.
To read more, please seeBack to top.
7. The Finkbeiner Test: What Matters in Stories about Women Scientists?
From: Caroline Simpson [simpsonc_at_fiu.edu]
Christie Aschwanden on the DoubleXScience blog discusses a recent posting by Ann Finkbeiner at Last Word on Nothing on being fed up with the usual focus of profiles of women scientists. She's had enough, and proposes the following rules that were inspired by the Bechdel test for movies:
To pass the Finkbeiner test, the story cannot mention
The fact that she’s a woman Her husband’s job Her child care arrangements How she nurtures her underlings How she was taken aback by the competitiveness in her field How she’s such a role model for other women How she’s the “first woman to…”
For the original posts, please seeBack to top.
8. Special Section in Nature on Women in Science
From: Maryam Modjaz [mmodjaz_at_nyu.edu]
A special section of Nature finds that there is still much to do to achieve gender equality in science:Back to top.
9. Should we replace work-life-balance with autonomy?
From: Nancy Brickhouse [nbrickhouse_at_cfa.harvard.edu]
Should we replace work-life-balance with autonomy? By Melissa J. Anderson
New Accenture research, published today, shows that more and more employees globally feel they are getting a handle on work life balance. In fact, according to the study, the same percentage of men and women (70 percent) say they believe they can “have it all,” just maybe not all at the same time.
This shows that people feeling a sense of empowerment about their ability to negotiate their own career and personal demands.
The research (which consisted of an online survey of 4,100 business executives at medium and large companies around the world) reflects what Accenture’s Managing Director of Global Inclusion amp; Diversity Nellie Borrero called a growing trend. She believes corporate culture is evolving in a way that encourages people to take more control over their own career paths. Those stats on work life balance may be part of a new global employee autonomy paradigm.
To read more, please seeBack to top.
10. Call for Nominations for the 2013 IUPAP Young Scientist Medal in the field of Astrophysics
From: Karen Masters [Karen.Masters_at_port.ac.uk]
The IUPAP Young Scientist Medal of 2013 and Award of 1,000 EUR will be awarded for a scientist working in the field of astrophysics. To read more about how to nominate a candidate, please seeBack to top.
11. Job Opportunities
For those interested in increasing excellence and diversity in their organizations, a list of resources and advice is here:
* Tenure-Track Assistant Professor position, Ball State University, Muncie, Indiana http://cms.bsu.edu/about/administrativeoffices/humanresources/employopp/public/faculty/colscihum/103812-asst-prof-physics-and-astronomyBack to top.
12. 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.
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.Back to top.
13. How to Subscribe or Unsubscribe to the AASWOMEN newsletter
Join AAS Women List by email:
Send email to aaswlist+subscribe_at_aas.org 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 aawlist+unsubscribe_at_aas.org 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 https://accounts.google.com/newaccount?hl=en
Google Groups Subscribe Help:Back to top.
14. Access to Past Issues
Each annual summary includes an index of topics covered.Back to top.