AAS Committee on the Status of Women 
Issue of March 13, 2009 
eds. Joan Schmelz, Caroline Simpson, & Michele Montgomery 
This week's issues: 
1.  AAS Women In Astronomy Blog - Astronomy Life After the Post-Doc Phase: 
Is the Cup Half Full or Half Empty? 
2.  AAS 214th Meeting Early Registration 
3.  AAS Book Inventory 
4.  Orders Now Being Taken for the Galileoscope 
5.  IYA Issue of Physics World 
6.  AAUW - Where the Girls Are:  The Facts About Gender Equality in Higher 
7.  Conference on Understanding Interventions 
8.  How to Submit, Subscribe, or Unsubscribe to AASWOMEN 
9.  Access to Past Issues of AASWOMEN 
1.  AAS Women In Astronomy Blog - Astronomy Life After the Post-Doc Phase: 
 Is the Cup Half Full or Half Empty? 
[Joan Schmelz and Hannah Jang-Condell debate astronomy life after the 
post-doc phase. First is the view from Joan Schmelz followed by the view 
from Hannah Jang-Condell.] 
"The Post Postdoc Phase" 
From:  Joan
Women in Astronomy Blog, March 9, 2009 
After reading the blog post on "Squeezing the Pipeline?" from Hannah
in Astronomy Blog, Feb 14, 2009 as well as the comments about the 
downside of moving every three years, I began to wonder how 
widespread this feeling is. I work with many postdocs in my 
current position as a visiting astronomer at CfA. Discussions 
at morning coffee are just as likely to be about future jobs as about 
the latest science... 
Were times this tough when I was a postdoc looking for a permanent job? 
Well, maybe. There were no federal positions available at NASA because 
all those guys hired after Sputnik had not yet retired. The old 
Soviet Union was collapsing so all the open faculty 
positions in the US had hundreds (literally) of applications. There was 
also a recession, but admittedly not as bad as the one we're experiencing 
I took a job in the physics department of a 4th tier university in a 
flyover state. This was certainly not my first choice. If fact, 
such a position would not have been in the top 100 when I was a postdoc. 
My choice, however, was to take this job or leave astronomy. I decided 
to give it a try. 
First the bad news:  [To read more on Joan's view, the 'Cup Half Full' 
side, to read follow-on comments, and to post your own 
comments, please go to 
"Something I Would Like to See the Decadal Report Address 
But Am Afraid It Won't" 
From:  HannahWomen in Astronomy Blog, March 9, 2009 
The Astronomy and Astrophysics Decadal Survey is assesing the "State of the 
Profession"  in addition to science topics for the next decade. The 
study groups include Computation, Simulation, and Data Handling; 
Demographics; Facilities, Funding and Programs; 
International and Private Partnership; Education and Public Outreach; and 
Astronomy and Public Policy. The deadline for white papers is March 15. 
The trouble is, the topic I want to talk about here doesn't fit neatly into 
any of the above categories. You see, when I think about "State of the 
Profession," I start thinking about "State of My Career Path" and then 
I start thinking about life as a postdoc and the glum job prospects in 
the face of a sinking economy. 
Over the years, I have heard numerous young faculty speak nostalgically of 
their post-doc years, those halcyon days when all they had to do was 
their own research, but now they are bogged down with teaching and 
committee work and writing grant proposals, etc etc. 
Considering how I feel about being a postdoc right now, I'm not really 
looking forward to the future, if this is as good as it gets. 
Here's the thing:  [To read more on Hannah's view - the 'Cup Half Empty' 
side, to read follow-on comments, and to post your own comments, 
please go to 
2.  AAS 214th Meeting Early Registration 
From:  AAS Electronic Announcement #194 ? March 11, 2009 
Registration is open for the 214th AAS Meeting, Pasadena, CA, 7-11 June 
Online: aas.org/meetings/aas214/registration.php 
Phone: 202-328-2010 ext. 110 
Fax: 202-234-7850 
Register by 20 March to receive the discounted rate. 
3.  AAS Book Inventory 
From: AAS Electronic Announcement #194 - March 11, 2009 
The following books are available from the AAS book inventory: 
Please fill out the book order form. Members are only responsible for 
shipping costs which we are charging a flat shipping and handling fee 
of $15.00 per book. For bulk orders discount shipping will be 
determined on a case by case basis. If you have any questions or 
concerns please send an email to Scot Garvey (garveyaas.org). This is 
a members only opportunity and books will be offered on a first come 
first served basis. 
4.  Orders Now Being Taken for the Galileoscope 
From: AAS Electronic Announcement #194 - March 11, 2009 
The Galileoscope is a high-quality, low-cost telescope kit developed as a 
Cornerstone Project of the International Year of Astronomy 2009. For just 
$15 plus shipping, you get a 50-mm f/10 achromatic refractor that snaps 
together in less than 5 minutes 
and gives great views of the celestial wonders that Galileo first glimpsed 
400 years ago: lunar craters and mountains, Jupiter's moons, the phases 
of Venus, Saturn's rings, and the Pleiades and Beehive star clusters. 
It comes with a 25x eyepiece and 2x Barlow lens, accepts standard 1-inch 
accessories, and attaches to any photo tripod (not included). 
Two educational activity guides are already available, and more are coming. 
You can download these guides, and order small numbers of Galileoscopes 
using a credit card or PayPal, at 
Institutions wishing to place orders of 100 or more get a discounted price 
of $12.50 per kit, save on shipping via freight service, and may pay by 
purchase order. To initiate a large order of 100+ kits, fill out the 
Request for Quotation form. [Form can be found at http://aas.org/node/544] 
5.  IYA Issue of Physics World 
From: AAS Electronic Announcement #194 - March 11, 2009 
The March 2009 issue of Physics World is a special issue on astronomy. 
It is part of the magazine's contribution to the International Year of 
Physics World is an international monthly magazine published by the 
Institute of Physics. 
6.  AAUW - Where the Girls Are:  The Facts About Gender Equality in Higher 
Education From:  AAUW 
AAUW released the most comprehensive analysis to date on trends in 
educational achievement by gender, race, ethnicity, and income. This 
report shows that girls and boys from the fourth grade through the end 
of college are making steady educational gains. An analysis of data from 
all 50 states indicates that girls' successes do not come at the 
expense of boys. This report is also the first to analyze gender 
differences within economic and ethnic categories. The data show that 
family income is more closely associated with academic success than 
with gender. The report, Where the Girls Are: The Facts About Gender 
Equity in Education, presents a comprehensive look at girls' 
educational achievement during the past 35 years, paying special attention 
to the relationship between girls' and boys' progress. Analyses of 
results from standardized tests such as the National Assessment 
of Educational Progress (NAEP) and the SAT and ACT college entrance 
examinations, as well as other measures of educational achievement, 
provide an overall picture of trends in gender equity from elementary 
school to college and beyond.  [An Executive Summary and Full Report can 
be found at 
7.  Conference on Understanding Interventions 
From:  WIPHYS March, 11, 2009 
Registration is now open for the 3rd Annual Conference on Understanding 
Interventions that Broaden Participation in Research Careers to be held 
May 7-9, 2009 at the Bethesda North Marriott in Bethesda, Maryland 
(Washington DC metro area). 
We are still accepting abstracts for posters (on intervention research, 
effective strategies/best practices, and program evaluation design), oral 
presentations on research results (15-20 minutes), and workshops 
(1-2 hrs) on effective strategies and evaluation approaches.  The deadline 
for all abstracts is Friday, March 13th.  Graduate travel award 
applications are also due March 13th. 
The conference is designed for behavioral/social science and education 
researchers, graduate students, evaluators, and faculty in STEM (science, 
technology, engineering and mathematics) fields who participate in or 
conduct research on intervention programs designed to increase the number 
of students in the STEM PhD pipeline. Examples of 
intervention programs include summer research programs for minority 
students, peer tutoring in freshmen chemistry, graduate student 
retention programs, K-12 science outreach, and career development 
issues for women in engineering. 
The Conference Summary from 2008 is now posted on the website. 
For more information, contact Dr. Linda Blockus 
AAAS.org, 202-326-6766). 
8.  How to Submit, Subscribe, or Unsubscribe to AASWOMEN 
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9.  Access to Past Issues of AASWOMEN 
Past issues of AASWOMEN are available at 
Each annual summary includes an index of topics covered.