Date: Mon, 12 May 2003 19:25:34 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: AASWOMEN for May 9, 2003

AAS Committee on the Status of Women
Weekly issue of May 9, 2003
eds. Meg Urry, Patricia Knezek, & Michael Rupen

This week's issues:
1. Re-entering the career track: AASWOMEN & WIPHYS responses continued
2. Conference on Women In Astronomy II: 
   a. Poster submissions invited 
   b. Stats for AASWOMEN - did the Baltimore Charter help?
   c. How many men should attend?
3. Interesting New York Times article on Women in Science
4. A practical question on hiring and family leave
5. Hawaii International Conference on Sciences
6. Lucent Announces Global Science Scholars
7. Ellen Williams elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
8. Visiting Instructor, University of Puget Sound
9. Temporary Visiting Asst. Professorship, Western Kentucky University

    Women in Astronomy II: Ten Years After
   Pasadena, California June 27 - 28, 2003
    >>Registration deadline: June 16<<

1. Re-entering the career track: AASWOMEN & WIPHYS responses continued

Family leave
From: Doug Duncan

When I arrived at Adler Planetarium in 1992, just after leaving STScI,
I proposed instituting a family leave policy to the senior management
They all looked at me with astonishment, despite the fact
that all the other senior staff were women, except the Director.
Adler did not approve a policy. I don't know if they have one today.

I took two months off anyway. It may have hurt my career there,
I'm not sure. My post-leave evaluation was excellent but I found that
another department had been stealing resources from mine while
I was gone, and this hurt later.

At some point you have to just decide in favor of
your family, if you're going to have one.

Doug Duncan

Re-entering the career track: AASWOMEN response 
From: Anonymous

It's reassuring and encouraging to see all the optimistic responses to the
issue of re-entering the career track. I couldn't help but notice through,
that most of the respondents had not taken significant amounts of time
off, suggesting to me that those who did might not even be on this mailing
list any longer. I also noticed that the most positive responses were from
women who were fortunate enough to have husbands who had been either
willing to take time off themselves, or had been the "following spouse". I
have always been the "following spouse" and that is despite the fact that
I got my PhD 5 years before my husband. At first I was fortunate to find
postdoc positions close to where he was and then I was on soft money (my
own grants). I took about 4 months off after the birth of my (8 weeks
premature) son. "Time off" really meant that I tried to work at
home in during his naps. He is now a toddler and I still wish I had taken
more real time off. If I knew for sure that I could re-enter the workforce
and would be able to resume a career as a researcher I would immediately
have a second child and take time off to enjoy my toddler and the new
baby. But I'm terrified of doing so because there are no guarantees in my
current soft money position. Perhaps I should just take the plunge and do
this because juggling work and motherhood has had a very negative effect
on my research output anyway.

I think that women are often expected to be more willing to tolerate
less-than-ideal work situations because of the pressure to make both
family and career situations work. I know too many women who, like me,
have taken less than ideal jobs to be with their families - I know no men
in similar situation despite the fact that the physics/astronomy workforce
is dominated by men - I am sure they are out there but not, surely in as
large numbers as the women. I think that both men and women would probably
enjoy having the option of taking some time off (not just 1-2 months - but
6 months to 2 years) to take care of young children (or ill or elderly
parents) without having to fear losing their jobs or worse still putting
at risk their entire career in physics/astronomy. I certainly know that in
Canada, tenure track faculty women get to take an entire year of maternity
leave so it's not a completely bizarre suggestion.

Hopefully, with time, academic institutions will come to realize that
happy fullfilled people are more productive people and this tendency
to expect that people (especially academic women) need to choose between
career and kids will slowly change.

>From WIPHYS May 6, 2003

Hello again,
I wanted to get out this email before the discussion about re-entry
dissipated, but it's the end of the semester and I've been extra busy.

There were two reasons for me to get a discussion going on
WIPHYS. One was to see what other women physicists were
thinking. The other was to have some 'action' come out of all of
this. If not for others, at least for myself. What can we do? What
do we want? What next?

To this end, I'd like to collect a list of ideas people have about how
to help women stay in or get back into physics. The list could
include everything from: reminding young women that they CAN
do it (Meg Urry's point), insisting on childcare at meetings (one of
Simonetta Liuti's thoughts), starting a fellowship like the UK's
Daphne Jackson Fellowship, informing both women and men grad
students of their options for family, or even anecdotes about what
worked for you.

I'd like to collect all ideas, big and small. The more concrete and
specific the better, as this makes it easier for others to do. Then I
could post the list back to WIPHYS and/or on a web site. I'd like it
to be a reminder to everyone in physics, about the things we can all
still do to make a career in physics better for women, better for
families, and so better for all physicists.

Please feel free to email me directly. I'll send an email back to
WIPHYS when I've collected a decent list.

Thank you to all,
Elizabeth Freeland 

2. Conference on Women In Astronomy II: 
   a. Poster submissions invited 
   b. Stats for AASWOMEN - did the Baltimore Charter help?
   c. How many men should attend?

2a. poster submissions invited 
From: Meg Urry

There will be an opportunity to present posters at the Women in Astronomy II
meeting. These are expected to be posters on the topic of women in science
rather than astronomical research results. For examples, have a look at the
Proceedings for WiA I (, Chapter V,
all of which were originally presented as posters.

2b. Stats for AASWOMEN - did the Baltimore Charter help?
From: David Helfand
[Eds. note:  The formatting of the table included here was chosen to 
ensure that the table retains its formatting through various mailers.
Spaces don't always translate correctly!  Spaces have been converted
to "~" in the table.  Please contact us if you have any difficulty 
reading it.]

In search of financial support for the upcoming meeting on Women in
Astronomy II, I was confronted with the question as to whether or not the
inaugural meeting on this subject in 1992 and the resulting Baltimore Charter
had produced any effect on the numbers of women, and the culture they
encounter, in our profession.  We know that the percentages of women in some
categories have been increasing (if too slowly). Did anything change more
abruptly after 1992?
Here are some statistics on AAS officers and prize winners from before and
after the Baltimore Charter:


While this is not unalloyed great news (having more women spending time in
service to the profession has both positive and negative aspects), it does
present an AAS face that includes women in leadership roles at much higher
levels than before the Baltimore Charter and, in that their representation
significantly exceeds the fraction of senior women faculty and researches,
could be interpreted as a proactive effort to improve the situation of women
in Astronomy. Unfortunately, however, it takes more than a change of face to
change a culture; in my view at least, there has been less progress on more
substantive issues.

2c. How many men should attend?
From: Doug Duncan

I'm writing to promote a discussion before the Women in Astronomy II
meeting occurs, on the topic of how many men should attend the
meeting. I personally think the percentage should be relatively high
-- more than at WIA I -- because I think we've gained some understanding
during the past 10 years that some key things which put women at a
disadvantage are subtle and not fixable without men's participation.
Let me explain.

When we put on WIA I no such conference had ever been held in
astronomy. The five organizers spent a lot of time
(the better part of a year) digging up basic statistics and
experiences from other fields of science where the sample size
of faculty to study is bigger. We found things such as the
"matched triads" study which followed groups of Ph. D's,
all with degrees from the same institution, the same year, some
male and some female, and documented how women slowly fall behind
as they progress in academia. Things like salaries, square feet of
lab space, etc. are things you can straightforwardly measure.

In WIA II I think we have to deal with more subtle issues such as
how men judge women, and how we judge "excellence."
Though we'd probably all like to think we are bias-free scientists,
research clearly shows that expectation and prior experience
virtually always affects judgments. The Univ. of Colorado
had an excellent workshop on how men and women communicate
differently. The presenter read a series of emails, and asked
participants, "Written by a man, or a woman?" We ALWAYS could
tell. It then was pointed out that if women and men recognized
the differences were in approach and style they could deal
with them. HOWEVER, the most typical outcome (according to the
presenter) was that men judged there was something "wrong" with
how women communicate and act. "Why can't women argue like hell
in a meeting, and then go out for a beer, like men do?"
(answer: men practice all their life). The downside comes when
such behavior is judged as weaker science. Example: Excellent women
faculty candidate gives a talk. I leave the talk behind two
senior men. One says to the other, "She's not as good as I'd heard.
She hardly quoted her own work at all." I happen to be in
the same subfield as the candidate, the other two faculty were
not. Their judgment was affected by her presentation, which
they felt was not confident. (disclaimer - this was not at CU!)

These issues are critical, and they cannot be solved by women unless
men become aware of them. How can that best happen?
(I recommend the book, "Why So Slow -the Advancement of Women"
by Valian, a scholarly study of all this.)

Doug Duncan
Univ. of Colorado
3. Interesting New York Times article on Women in Science
From: Keivan Stassun & Barbara McArthur

An interesting article titled "Women in Science Push Higher on the Y Axis 
of Success" by Natalie Angier appeared in the May 6, 2003 issue of the New
York Times.  To access the article, go to:

[Eds. note:  You may need to register with the New York Times to access the
article.  Registration is free.]

4. A practical question on hiring and family leave
From: Michael Richmond
  My department went through a job search this year. We had two
positions to fill, and badly needed them both (the workload here
is pretty heavy). Next year, the average teaching load will
still be larger than most of us would like. It doesn't leave
much time for research.

  I am wondering how, or if, one would bring up issues related
to family leave and child care during the search procedure;
or how long after being hired one might raise the subject.

  Suppose, for example, that we hired two persons, A and B, for
tenure-track positions. We would expect that each would teach
6 courses next year, and the year after, etc. Now, if one year
after being hired, person A said, "I wish to take next year off
in order to spend more time with my family," our department would
be caught by surprise. Would we have time to make a proper search
for a temporary position to replace A? Maybe not. It would fall
on the rest of us to pick up the work.

  If person A said, one year after being hired, "I wish to take
a year off sometime in the near future to spend more time with my
family", it would be easier for us to adjust; we could plan a
search for a temporary position (or get permission to make one,

  Most people planning to ask for family leave are probably
going to be relatively new at a job (given the time it takes
to get through graduate school). The greater the advance
warning one can give, the easier it will be to accomodate the
request. So, what's the "best" time to mention this to
one's department head or dean? After one year? After three years?
After being granted tenure?

  Would it ever make sense for person A to volunteer, during
an interview, that person A would like to take significant
amounts of time off in the near future? It would give the
department more advance warning, of course, but I can't see
that it would reflect favorably on our decision to hire A.

                                      Michael Richmond

5. Hawaii International Conference on Sciences

>From WIPHYS May 6, 2003


January 15 - 18, 2004, Renaissance Ilikai Waikiki Hotel, Honolulu
Call for Papers/Abstracts/Submissions
Submission Deadline: August 25, 2003
Web address:
Email address:

The 2004 Hawaii International Conference on Sciences will be held
from January 15 (Thursday) to January 18 (Sunday), 2004 at the
Renaissance Ilikai Waikiki Hotel in Honolulu, Hawaii. The
conference will provide many opportunities for academicians and
professionals from sciences and related fields to interact with
members inside and outside their own particular disciplines. Cross-
disciplinary submissions are welcome. All Areas of the Sciences are
Invited. (See website for complete listing) The Hawaii International
Conference on Sciences encourages the following types of
papers/abstracts/submissions for any of the listed areas:

Research Papers - Completed papers.
Abstracts - Abstracts of completed or proposed research.
Student Papers - Research by students.
Poster Sessions/Research Tables - informal presentation of papers
or abstracts.
Work-in-Progress Reports or Proposals for future projects.
Reports on issues related to teaching.
Panel Discussions, Practitioner Forums and Tutorials are invited.
Workshop proposals are invited.

For more information about submissions see:

6. Lucent Announces Global Science Scholars

>From WIPHYS May 7, 2003

Lucent Technologies will host 52 high school and first- and second-
year university students from around the world as part of its 2003
Global Science Scholars program from July 25 through Aug. 1.
Lucent's annual academic competition is designed to support
outstanding science students who are pursuing careers in
information and communications technologies.

The scholars will receive an expense-paid trip to attend the Global
Science Scholars Summit at Lucent's world headquarters in Murray
Hill, N.J., and a $5,000 award to use toward university costs. In the
year following their selection, recipients are also offered a paid
internship at a Lucent location in their home country, where

The students will shadow Bell Labs researchers, tour laboratories,
participate in panel discussions given by Bell Labs researchers and
interact with Nobel Prize winner Horst Stormer. The scholars also
will be challenged to investigate and present their findings on a new
scientific topic currently being worked on by Bell Labs scientists
and researchers.

The 52 recipients were selected by independent panels of judges in
each country and in six geographic regions of the United States.
Their selection was based on potential for future contribution to the
fields of information and telecommunications technology, and their
overall academic achievement, including their grade point average,
enrollment in advanced placement courses, honors classes and
college courses. Lucent received applications from students in 42
states, plus Washington D.C., and Puerto Rico and from 13
countries outside the United States.

The 23 U.S. scholars (see list at
USLGSS.htm ) have been involved in a variety of research and
academic projects and are very active in extracurricular activities, as
well as in their communities.

The Institute of International Education (IIE), a New York-based
non-profit organization, manages the program in partnership with
the Lucent Technologies Foundation. For information on study
abroad please see the Web site: , , and

The Lucent Technologies Foundation is the charitable arm of
Lucent Technologies. For more information, visit its Web site at

Lucent Technologies, headquartered in Murray Hill, N.J., USA,
designs and delivers networks for the world's largest
communications service providers. For more information on Lucent
Technologies, visit its Web site at

Beth Barak, Lucent Global Science Scholars Program
Institute of International Education 

7. Ellen Williams elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

>From WIPHYS May 8, 2003

We congratulate Ellen Williams, Distinguished University Professor
at University of Maryland, College Park, on her recent election to
the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The 2003 class of
187 Fellows and 29 Foreign Honorary Members includes four
college presidents, three Nobel Prize winners, and four Pulitzer
Prize winners. The American Academy of Arts & Sciences was
founded in 1780 by John Adams, James Bowdoin, John Hancock,
and other scholar-patriots "to cultivate every art and science which
may tend to advance the interest, honor, dignity, and happiness of
a free, independent, and virtuous people." The current membership
includes more than 150 Nobel laureates and 50 Pulitzer Prize
winners. More information as well as a complete listing of new
members can be found at:

8. Visiting Instructor, University of Puget Sound

>From WIPHYS May 5, 2003
The University of Puget Sound is seeking (at the last moment due to an 
unanticipated resignation) applicants for a one-year, visiting, full-time 
physics instructor. The position will begin in the fall of 2003. We are on 
a semester system, so our academic year begins in late August or early 

We are located in a residential area of north Tacoma, Washington, near the 
Cascade and Olympic Mountain ranges and on the Puget Sound. The physics 
department is active with 8 full-time members and graduates an average of 
12 physics majors each year. In addition to course offerings for the major 
and service to other science majors, the physics department is active in 
course offerings for nonscience majors, including freshman seminars and
upper-level science-in-context courses.

Please see our website for information about the school and department.

Please contact me directly as soon as possible if you have any interest in 
this position. Our semester ends in a couple of weeks, and we are trying to 
secure a hire as soon as possible.

Our salaries and benefits are usually considered good to generous for 
visiting positions.

Kristi Hendrickson
Assistant Professor of Physics / Dual-Degree Engineering Program Director
University of Puget Sound
Office telephone (253)879-1566

9. Temporary Visiting Asst. Professorship, Western Kentucky University

>From WIPHYS May 12, 2003

The Physics and Astronomy Department invites applications for a
temporary visiting assistant professorship to begin August 15,
2003. We seek a person with a strong commitment to teaching
undergraduate physics courses and laboratories. A Ph.D. degree in
physics or a related field is required and teaching experience is
preferred. Review of all applications will begin June 2 with
applications being accepted until the position is filled. The
availability of the position is contingent on funding.

To apply send a letter of application, resume, and the names,
addresses, and telephone numbers of three references to
       Doug Harper, Search Committee Chairman
       Department of Physics and Astronomy
       Western Kentucky University
       Bowling Green, KY 42101-3576
       FAX: (270) 745-2014.
Additional information may be found at
Western Kentucky University is an equal-opportunity, affirmative-
action employer. All qualified individuals are encouraged to apply
including women, minorities, persons with disabilities and disabled