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Gender Initiatives Gain

The campus discussion about faculty diversity—particularly the academic development and careers of women—that was launched last spring took programmatic shape and gathered intellectual steam early in the fall term.

Senior vice provost for faculty development and diversity Evelynn M. Hammonds told the Faculty of Arts and Sciences on September 27 that she had hired an assistant provost, several project staff members, and a statistician (surveys on faculty members’ experiences and work conditions and other data collection will be high priorities), and had assembled an advisory and coordinating committee comprising representatives appointed by each school’s dean. She also reported progress on budgeting for enhanced child care and spousal job placement, among other measures.

Two new courses reflected scholarly interest in the subject. Physics research associate Gerhard Sonnert offered Sociology 163, “Women and Science.” Lecturer Paula J. Caplan offered Psychology 1705, “Psychology of Sex and Gender,” including units on mathematical, spatial, and verbal abilities. This year’s junior symposium for concentrators pursuing mind/brain/behavior studies focused on “Sex, Gender, Mind, and Brain.” Elsewhere, Graduate School of Education researcher Cathy A. Trower reported on a study highlighting conflicts between tenure demands and women’s family lives.