Issue of October 09, 2015
eds: Daryl Haggard, Nicolle Zellner, Meredith Hughes, Elysse Voyer & Heather Flewelling
This week's issues:
1. Parental Leave Policies 2.0
From: Ed Bertschinger via womeninastronomy.blogspot.com
The US remains the only developed country that has no national policy or law providing for paid parental leave. As a result, a plethora of different policies are utilized by employers and organizations. Several years ago the CSWA began a useful list of parental leave policies at astronomical institutions. Readers unfamiliar with this will find it interesting to compare their institution with others.
The vast array of different policies offers an opportunity to assess the effectiveness of different leave policies. Which policies promote employee well being and success? Which are the best for recruiting, retaining, and advancement of all workers? Which policies do employees most like? Do policies exacerbate or ameliorate inequality?
To read more, please seeBack to top.
2. Woman Astronomer of the Month: Joan Schmelz
From: Christina Richey via womeninastronomy.blogspot.com
As a new series to the Women in Astronomy blog, each month we will highlight one female astronomer for her work in the field and outstanding service to the community. This month we are featuring past Chair Joan Schmelz, whose excellent work as Chair of the Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy has been a vital part of the success of both the CSWA and the Women in Astronomy blog.
Joan Schmelz currently serves as the deputy director of the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico. She is a solar physicist who received her Ph.D. in Astronomy and Astrophysics from Penn State University in 1987. She then joined the operations team for the Solar Maximum Mission Satellite at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. She is a professor at University of Memphis and a regular visitor to the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. Her research investigates coronal heating and coronal loops as well as the properties and dynamics of the solar atmosphere. She is a former program officer for the National Science Foundation's Division of Astronomical Sciences. Schmelz is also the former chair of the American Astronomical Society's Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy. In addition to writing science papers for the Astrophysical Journal, she also writes regular posts for the Women in Astronomy blogspot on topics such as unconscious bias, stereotype threat, and the gender gap.
To read more, please seeBack to top.
3. Advancing Postdoc Women Guidebook
From: Nicolle Zellner [nzellner_at_albion.edu]
The National Postdoctoral Association has released the "Advancing Postdoc Women Guidebook". It is primarily intended for women, but chapters about utilizing services of professional societies, career planning, and building good mentoring relationships are relevant for all readers.
Read more at
A free pdf file of the book is available atBack to top.
4. Announcing Bitch Media Fellowships for Writers
From: Johanna Teske [jteske_at_carnegiescience.edu]
Announcing Bitch Media Fellowships for Writers Bitch Media, for almost 20 years an independent, nonprofit feminist media organization, is pleased to announce the Bitch Media Fellowships for Writers, a series of three-month intensive writing fellowships ($1500) whose goal is to develop, support, and amplify new, diverse voices in feminist, activist, and pop-culture media. If you are a writer who is just getting started and have little publication experience, we strongly encourage you to apply. Fellows may be based globally—telecommuting is an option.
To read more, please see
https://bitchmedia.org/article/announcing-bitch-media-fellowships-writers?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_content=%3E%3E%20FIND%20OUT%20MORE%20&utm_campaign=Writing%20Fellowships%20Announcement%202015Back to top.
5. What fewer women in STEM means for their mental health
From: Heather Flewelling [heather_at_ifa.hawaii.edu]
by Jennifer Drake
“You’re in engineering!?! Wow, you must be super-smart…” It has been over 10 years since I was a first-year engineering undergraduate student; but when I remember the time a fellow female student made this comment, I can still feel a visceral, bodily reaction: my muscles tense, my heart rate increases, my breath quickens. Comments like these on the surface appear as compliments. But when unpacked, they reveal subversive attitudes about women in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). As I think back to this encounter, there are two aspects that stay with me. First was the surprised, skeptical tone of the other student’s voice that conveyed it was surprising and unusual (or, to put it more crudely, freakish) that I was in engineering. Second was the attitude that since I was in engineering, this could be explained only if there was something exceptional or outstanding (or, once again, freakish) about me. Women remain an underrepresented group in STEM. In Canada, women account for 23% of engineering graduates and 30% of mathematics and computer graduates. In the United States, women are 12% of the engineering and 26% of the computing workforce. The reality is that STEM professions are most commonly male and it remains surprising when these professional roles are held by women. The large gender imbalance means that women may naturally feel they’re outsiders at school and at work. This situation is often uncomfortable and mentally demanding, when even just showing up and doing your job comes with constant social stresses and anxiety. Ironically, the difficulties that they (we) encounter often dissuade the next generation of women from joining us. It’s a self-reinforcing cycle that we need to break.
To read more, please seeBack to top.
6. Job Opportunities
For those interested in increasing excellence and diversity in their organizations, a list of resources and advice is here: http://www.aas.org/cswa/diversity.html#howtoincrease
- Clare Booth Luce Junior Faculty Position, University of Notre Dame
- Tenure-Track Assistant Professor Position
- McWilliams Postdoctoral Fellowship in the McWilliams Center for Cosmology, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA
- Faculty position in the McWilliams Center for Cosmology, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA
- Astro Faculty Position -- University of Utah (OPEN RANK)
7. How to Submit to the AASWOMEN newsletter
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