Date: Tue, 4 May 2004 14:47:17 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: AASWOMEN for April 30, 2004

AAS Committee on the Status of Women
Weekly issue of April 30, 2004
eds. Patricia Knezek, Michael Rupen, & Jim Ulvestad
This week's issues:
1. Girls Go Tech Girl Scouts Website
2. Girls and Science and Math Fact Sheets by Girls Inc.
3. June issue of STATUS
4. Request for resources for Denver AAS Astronomy Workforce session
5. Interview Skills Booklet
6. Physics GRE
7. Summer Teaching Opportunity
1. Girls Go Tech Girl Scouts Website
From: Meg Urry & WomenTech Educators

Studies show that by age 12, most girls lose interest in math, science and
technology and their chance at most future jobs. Girls Go Tech is an
initiative to encourage girls to develop an early interest in these subjects
and, ultimately, maintain that interest as they grow up to help ensure a more
diverse, dynamic, and productive workforce in the future. Girls Go Tech
highlights the math, science and technology behind everyday life, and
encourages young girls to, "Set your sights on math and science. It's a great
way to see the world." is an interactive website which
provides activities that encourage girls to become interested in how things
2. Girls and Science and Math Fact Sheets by Girls Inc.
From: Meg Urry & WomenTech Educators

Girls Inc. -- a national organization that provides afterschool programs
for Girls -- has three current fact sheets that may be of interest. The Girls
and Science and Math Fact Sheet; Girls and Information Technology Fact Sheet;
and Girls and Careers. See other Resources.

Here are a few sample facts:
Among students taking The College Board Advanced Placement (AP) tests in 1999,
young women and men took math (49% vs. 51%, respectively) and chemistry (47%
vs. 53%, respectively) in nearly equal numbers. In biology, young women
outnumbered young men 58% to 42%. Young men outnumbered young women about
three to one in computer science (73% vs. 27% respectively) and almost two to
one in physics (63% vs. 37%, respectively.)

Among young women interest in technology is not necessarily leading to
aspirations of technology-based careers. Only one in four young women reports
that she anticipates a career in technology compared to 60% of young men.

To access the fact sheets go to: 

3. June issue of STATUS
From: Fran Bagenal

The June issue of STATUS is rolling off the presses, ready in time for the AAS
meeting.  To subscribe to STATUS and have a copy mailed to you, send your postal 
address to Dennis Renner ( This next issue features an account 
by Jocelyn Bell Burnell of her discovery of pulsars - and much more.

4. Request for resources for Denver AAS Astronomy Workforce session
From: Fran Bagenal

I am organizing a session at the Denver AAS on the Astronomy Workforce
(below). In addition to two talks on demographics I wanted to start a public
discussion within our profession on family issues. People I asked for
suggestions of speakers came up with colleagues who have children. It occurred
to me that someone who does not have children may be able to make a stronger
case - from a workforce view - that these issues are important for our
profession. So, I'm giving the talk. I have several useful resources but I am
asking AASWOMEN readers if they have a favorite article on this topic that
they send it to me. My hope is that if interest is strong that a special
session on families be held at the next AAS. 

Thanks, Fran Bagenal -

Session 83. The Astronomy Workforce Special Session, Thursday, June 3, 2004,
10:00-11:30am, 601

Workforce Supply and Demand in Astronomy and Physics - R.L. Ivie, K.M. Nies
AAS Statistics and the 60% Cohort - K.B. Marvel (AAS)
Pragmatic Approaches to Family Issues and Workforce Implications - F. Bagenal
(Univ. of Colorado)

5. Interview Skills Booklet
>From WIPHYS of April 29, 2004

WISE (Women Into Science and Engineering)$First?OpenDocument promotes 
science and engineering careers among girls and women across the UK, through 
brochures, posters, websites, a video, hands-on courses and presentations. 
The publication, "Managing Your Interview"$First?OpenDocument is 
a guide to interview techniques for women scientists and engineers, with 
checklists, tips on first impressions, tips on asking (and responding to) 

6. Physics GRE
>From WIPHYS of April 20, 2004

There was a firestorm of comments in 1996 about the Physics GRE
which seems to have died down with few actual changes in

I am not exactly trying to stir up a hornet's nest, but one of the
most common questions I get from colleagues at PhD granting
institutions is 'why don't you send us some of your undergrads?'. I
am at a masters/bachelors institution with around 100
undergraduate majors in physics. Well, this year, two undergrads
with reasonably high GRE aptitude scores, high GPA and
research experience working with me were turned down by all the
PhD graduate schools at which they applied. They both tanked on
their physics GRE exams, especially in terms of their percentile
scores. One is female with mixed heritage and the other is
Hispanic. So much for diversity.

I've looked a bit for recent stats on how well the physics GRE
correlates with performance in graduate school and can't find much.
Some of the research on the GRE website relating the aptitude test
to achievement dates to the late 70's and a recent report is based on
interviews with graduate school staff and faculty. (Yes, we think
the ones we let in are the best, uh...) This of course makes me
wonder why schools are requiring the physics GRE. If it hasn't
been proven to be correlated with performance then it
seems a bit like using a thermometer that may perhaps give the
correct temperature.

I have hesitated to send this message to this forum, but I would
really like to know if someone has any sources of info that are not
anecdotal both about physics GRE tests and about admissions
standards to physics PhD programs.

The good news? Both students are going to spend a year in our
master's program here at Texas State and neither one is giving up
on getting a PhD, at least not yet...

Heather Galloway
Texas State University

7. Summer Teaching Opportunity
>From WIPHYS of April 27, 2004

I am writing from the Center for Talented Youth (CTY) at Johns
Hopkins University. We are a non-profit organization that offers
intensive, summer, residential academic programs for academically
talented middle/high school students. We are searching for summer
staff members with a background in and a passion for physics and
astronomy to work with us this summer. We currently have
openings in Loudonville, NY, Bristol, RI, Lancaster and Easton,
PA, Tempe, AZ and possibly Santa Cruz, CA (June 24 through July
17 and July 17 through August 7). Following is a standard posting
listing details about our program and various positions. If you
know of anyone who might be interested, please have them contact
me directly. Also, I would greatly appreciate it if you have any
suggestions about how to get this message out to a broader
audience. Thank you so much for your help with this matter.
Simeon Brodsky


CTY is seeking Instructors and Teaching Assistants to teach gifted
students 8-16. Each class has approximately sixteen students, an
Instructor, and a Teaching Assistant. CTY is an intensive 3-week
residential academic program where students can study advanced
topics at a pace and depth that match their abilities. CTY has over
20 sites on campuses in MD, DC, VA, PA, NY, MA, RI, CA with
2 sessions for the summer 2002, June 24-July 17 and July 17-August 7.

CTY encourages Astronomy or Physics graduate students or
faculty with teaching experience to apply for Instructor positions
(salary is $1900-$2800/session). We encourage Astronomy or
Physics graduate students without teaching experience or
undergraduates with upper level course work and a GPA of 3.2
and/or with significant interest in astronomy or physics to apply for
Teaching Assistant positions (salary is $950/session). Room
and board is included for all positions.

CTY staff work with exceptional students, make contacts
friendships with dynamic colleagues, and gain valuable experience
in a rigorous academic community.

For more information and a downloadable application please visit
our website at You may
also e-mail us at or call 410-516-0053.