AAS Committee on the Status of Women
Issue of June 7, 2013
eds. Caroline Simpson, Michele M. Montgomery, Daryl Haggard, & Nick Murphy

This week's issues:

1.  Two Years at Lick Observatory

2. Career Profile: From Astronomer to Tenure-Track Faculty

3. 'Women Programmers' and the Gender Bias in Science

4. Postdoc Pay: A Women's Issue

5. Women in Science Wednesday

6. App Camp for Girls

7.  How to Submit to the AASWOMEN Newsletter

8. How to Subscribe or Unsubscribe to the AASWOMEN Newsletter

9. Access to Past Issues of the AASWOMEN Newsletter

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1. Two Years at Lick Observatory
From: Joan Schmelz and Sethanne Howard via womeninastronomy.blogspot.com

Sethanne Howard blogs about her two years as an "astronomical
assistant" at Lick Observatory in the 1960's.

"I came to Lick in the summer of 1965. In those days, observatories
hired recent college graduates as "astronomical assistants" (these are
not night assistants). Each assistant was assigned to a staff
astronomer to learn the trade and skills of astronomy. We lived in the
dorm and ate in the dorm cafeteria. And once a week we would gather
around the one television in the dorm to watch Mission Impossible. (We
also sat on the parapet around the Main Building and rolled old tires
down the mountain, but you did not hear that from me.) The tenure of
an assistant was two years max. Then the person was expected to enter
graduate school. I was the next to last assistant hired at Lick. There
are no more astronomical assistants."

To read more, please see:

http://www.womeninastronomy.blogspot.com/2013/06/two-years-at-lick-observatory.html

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2. Career Profile: From Astronomer to Tenure-Track Faculty
From: Laura Trouille via womeninastronomy.blogspot.com

The AAS Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy and the AAS
Employment Committee have compiled dozens of interviews highlighting
the diversity of career trajectories available to astronomers. The
interviews share advice and lessons learned from individuals on those
paths.

Below is our interview with Meredith Hughes, an astronomer turned
professor. She is a first-year, tenure track faculty member at Wesleyan
University, an undergraduate-focused institution with a master's
program in astronomy.

To read more, please see:

http://www.womeninastronomy.blogspot.com/2013/06/career-profile-astronomer-to-tenure.html

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3. 'Women Programmers' and the Gender Bias in Science
From: Caroline Simpson [simpsonc_at_fiu.edu]

Sue V. Rosser blogs about Ellen Ullman's recent opinion piece "How to
Be a Woman Programmer."

After reading the recent opinion piece "How to Be a 'Woman
Programmer'" by Ellen Ullman in the New York Times Sunday Review, I
had two primary thoughts and reactions. Particularly as I neared the
end of the article, where the barriers faced by women in technology
were discussed, I was reminded of the interviews I had conducted in
Silicon Valley and the metro New York area that reinforced exactly
what Ullman said about why women patented at vastly lower rates than
men. The percentage of women granted patents ranks significantly lower
than that of their male peers in all disciplines, countries and
sectors; it also ranks very low relative to the percentage of women in
a specific scientific or technical field.

[...]
In contrast to the men I interviewed, all of the women knew what I
meant right away when I raised the issue of the gender gap in
patenting. They also understood how the gap served as a deterrent for
women's career advancement.

Read the entire article at
http://www.fromthesquare.org/?p=4935

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4. Postdoc Pay: A Women's Issue
From: Caroline Simpson via Inside Higher Ed

Jennifer Bussell on insidehighered.com writes:

[...]
Academic science offers a special case of the more general problem of
women's underrepresentation at the top of highly competitive careers.
This is because the problem we face as women in science is actually
most acute at one specific career stage: the postdoc. Survey data show
that women mostly opt out of academic science just before or during
postdoctoral training. Not coincidentally, this is exactly when they
have children.

Given that the average age of a Ph.D. awardee is 31, women postdocs
fall somewhere on the sharply declining portion of the female
fertility curve.

Read more: 
http://www.insidehighered.com/advice/2013/06/05/essay-link-between-postdoc-pay-and-
pipeline-women-science#ixzz2VYNInuZM

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5. Women in Science Wednesday
From: Caroline Simpson [simpsonc_at_fiu.edu]

Every Wednesday, the Smithsonian Bigger Picture blog features a
historical woman in science:

http://siarchives.si.edu/blog/tag/women-science-wednesday

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6. App Camp for Girls
From: Kevin Marvel [kevin.marvel_at_aas.org]

App Camp For Girls wants to address the gender imbalance among
software developers by giving girls the chance to learn how to build
apps, to be inspired by women instructors, and to get exposure to
software development as a career.

This weeklong camp for girls aged 12 to 14 covers the process from
brainstorming an app idea to marketing the finished app. The girls are
coached by volunteer female experts in software development, design,
testing, support and marketing.

http://www.appcamp4girls.com/

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7. 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.

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8.  How to Subscribe or Unsubscribe to the AASWOMEN newsletter

Join AAS Women List by email:

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9. Access to Past Issues

http://www.aas.org/cswa/AASWOMEN.html

Each annual summary includes an index of topics covered.