We just got the invitation to the Faculty Achievement and Awards Ceremony from our Chancellor and Mrs. Chancellor (that’s right, her name is not on there except as Mrs. So and So), and from the Faculty Senate Council and its male chair. Guess what? We will be honoring four men. Then we dance.
I suppose there is no reason a woman should be among the four honorees. After all, last year there were two honorees and one was female. The year before there were four honorees and all were male. This exhausts the time I’ve been here. One out of ten honorees at the Gala in the three years I’ve been here are female.
I understand exactly what kind of message this sends to academic women. I could fix it. Maybe you really do have to be a boy to get these prizes (not!). Then why don’t they honor more kinds of prizes so women would be included on the gala invitation?
Is this fair? I don’t know this place very well, so I don’t know. I do know it does not look good. My two immediate bosses are female, so that is wonderful. But overall? What is the place of women at Washington University in St. Louis? I could go on with some more anecdotes, but this is enough trouble for one cocky woman. I know there are some women in places of authority, though not the top two positions, that care.
What is it like at your university? What is fair? What do we need to do? What can we do?
By the way, I won’t be going to that Gala. You can probably figure out why.