AAS Committee on the Status of Women
Issue of December 16, 2011
eds. Joan Schmelz, Caroline Simpson, and Michele Montgomery

This week's issues:

1. Family Leave Policies for Astronomers

2. Autumn Conferences

3. CSWA Web Resources

4. Giving the Tech Industry a Makeover Will Draw More Women

5. America's Women

6. Minorities, Women Often Discouraged from Entering Engineering, Science Fields

7. Job at Florida International University

8. How to Submit to the AASWOMEN Newsletter

9. How to Subscribe or Unsubscribe to the AASWOMEN Newsletter

10. Access to Past Issues of the AASWOMEN Newsletter

1. Family Leave Policies for Astronomers
From: L. Trouille_at_Women_in_Astronomy_Blog, Dec 14, 2011

In the interest of fully supporting the intellectual efforts of astronomy
graduate students and postdoctoral researchers, we* have created a petition to
encourage the establishment of family leave policies by Astronomy Departments
and Fellowship Committees. These policies will provide these astronomers with
the freedom necessary to excel in academic pursuits while raising a family.

Please indicate your support by signing the petition at:


We will then share the document with all Fellowship program officers and Department chairs.

If you have any questions or suggestions, please email: 


Thanks for your support.

*Emily Freeland, Aaron Geller, Nick Murphy, Laura Trouille and the AAS Committee
on the Status of Women in Astronomy

To add to the wiki of current departmental and postdoctoral fellowship family
leave policies, please visit: 


2. Autumn Conferences
From: Joan Schmelz [jschmelz_at_memphis.edu]

If you have attended a conference this autumn, please help CSWA update its list
of % women invited speakers:


If you would like to add a conference, please carefully check the gender of all
the invited speakers and send the information given in each column of this table
to the CSWA webmaster, Nancy Morrison [nmorris_at_utnet.utoledo.edu]. Please
remember to include only invited speakers on research topics, no popular

3. CSWA Web Resources
From: Nancy Morrison [NMorris_at_UTNet.UToledo.Edu]

CSWA has compiled a list of resources on unconscious bias and the impostor syndrome:


Unconscious bias may be one of the most important obstacles to women's
professional success today. Especially noteworthy is a Feb 2011 article from The
New York Times entitled, "Cracking the Male Code of Office Behavior," by Shaunti


Victims of imposter syndrome feel that they are not as competent as their peers
think they are. Lately, some resources with positive suggestions for addressing
this problem have become available. 

We have also included some updates to the work-life balance page.

If you know of any good on-line resources that are not yet included, please send
links to the address above.

4. Giving the Tech Industry a Makeover Will Draw More Women
From: Joan Schmelz [jschmelz_at_memphis.edu]

Leah Eichler wrote this article for Saturday's Globe and Mail:

'Women in technology love to talk about the lack of women in technology,
especially those who reside at the top. So on Jan. 1, 2012, when Virginia
Rometty takes the helm of IBM Corp. as its first female chief executive officer,
joining Meg Whitman as the CEO of Hewlett-Packard Co. as one of the few women in
charge of a high-profile tech company, we should interpret this as success,

Probably not. As many in the tech industry argue, the dearth of women in the
industry overall contributes to that lack of representation at the C-suite
level. And the lack of women in the industry can be traced back to the small
numbers who pursue relevant degrees in science and tech. 

"It's always encouraging to see women take on leadership positions of such
global and influential firms, but I would not interpret that as success," said
Mic Berman, chief operating officer of Toronto-based FreshBooks, an online
billing service.'

To read more:


5. America's Women
From: Joannah Hinz [jlhinz_at_gmail.com]

[This is a teaser for a book review that will appear in the Jan 2012 issue of
STATUS, the semiannual magazine of CSWA. - Eds.]

America's Women: Four Hundred Years of Dolls, Drudges, Helpmates, and Heroines 
by Gail Collins

America's Women is a roller coaster ride through the milestones, large
and small, of the women upon which this country was settled, built and
developed. The chronicles of these fierce females elicit the same screams and
cries, the same heart-in-mouth feeling, as every twist and turn of an amusement
park ride. Each event is told in detail, beginning with the journeys of pioneers
of the Mayflower and ending with protesters of the 1970's. The same dizziness
and weak-leggedness you might feel disembarking from the roller coaster occurs
when a chapter ends. You're a bit breathless from having the wind full force in
your face for that long, and you wonder if you are able to steady yourself
before getting back in line for the next ride . . . 

To read more, look out for the next issue of STATUS!

6. Minorities, Women Often Discouraged from Entering Engineering, Science Fields
From: Joan Schmelz [jschmelz_at_memphis.edu]

Cathy Bonnstetter wrote this article for The State Journal:

'Many female and minority chemists and engineers say they were discouraged from
going into their chosen profession, according to a study released this week by
Bayer Corp.

The company released results from its Bayer Facts of Science Education XV
survey, "A View from the Gatekeepers," which was an online poll of science,
technology, engineering and math, or STEM, department chairs at America's top
200 research institutions.

The survey showed that 40 percent of minority and female chemists and engineers
polled said they were discouraged from studying STEM subjects. Forty-four
percent said their college professors were the sources of the discouragement. 

"We wanted to find out if this discouragement is still occurring," said Mae
Jemison, aphysician, astronaut, college professor and Bayer spokesperson for the
company's Making Science Make Sense Initiative. "We found out it is." 

The majority of department chairs polled in this year's survey gave their
institutions grades of C or lower when it came to recruiting and retaining women
and minorities in STEM programs. Bayer USA Foundation executive director Rebecca
Lucore said the survey illustrated the gaps in the fields.'

To read more:


7. Job at Florida International University

Instructor, Department of Physics, Florida International University 


8. How to Submit

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.

Please remember to replace "_at_" in the e-mail address above.

9. How to Subscribe or Unsubscribe

To subscribe or unsubscribe to the AASWOMEN newsletter, please fill in the
required information at:

http://lists.aas.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/aaswlist .

If you experience any problems, please email itdept_at_aas.org

10. Access to Past Issues


Each annual summary includes an index of topics covered.


AASWList mailing list

End of AASWList Digest, Vol 58, Issue 3