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Women and the Academy: Defining our Roles and Shaping our Communities

The ACM and the MCMS will co-host this meeting at Coe College in Cedar Rapids, IA September 25-27, 2009. ACM and MCMS campuses continue to add women to their faculties and on many campuses, nearly 50% of the professors are women. It is exciting to see women securing tenure-track positions, demonstrating excellence as teachers and scholars, receiving grants and awards, earning tenure and promotion and making major contributions to their departments, colleges, and broader scholarly communities. However, women faculty still face particular obstacles. Women report working longer on class preparation including lectures and labs in order to avoid confrontations with students who directly challenge their authority about grading, assignments and workload. During committee work, women sometimes perceive their abilities, experiences and knowledge are not as highly valued as those of their male colleagues.

The ACM Committee on the Status of Women and the leadership of the MCMS would like to invite women faculty to come spend a weekend considering these issues including practical solutions, strategies and best practices that may help women address these challenges. We are hoping that through this meeting and further conversations, women professors who feel isolated and marginalized will be supported and encouraged by other women faculty who are also feeling similar challenges, but have found ways to successfully navigate these obstacles and capitalize on the opportunities that allow them to flourish.

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