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Women in the Chemical Workforce: A WORKSHOP REPORT TO THE CHEMICAL SCIENCES ROUNDTABLE
still tend to focus on the costs—the self-image issues and the career path choices—as demotivating forces. We are getting hit in the stomach all the time, and—you've all watched boxing, a very masculine type of thing—it's always the stomach punches that get the guy in the end, because they're one after another, and they weaken. These are the demotivating forces that we need to overcome.
Marylee Southard, University of Kansas: Someone asked for more data from the statistician in their group. It may be extremely hard to track, but where are the engineers and chemists going who go directly out into the workplace with their B.S. degrees? We have been producing between one-quarter and one-third women for 15 years or so, but we don't see those numbers out in the workplace in industry and government. It is very difficult to track those. Is there a way to go about it other than asking individual alumni groups to get out their address files? I ask because our advisory board has addressed this as well, and we cannot find our own alumni in the workplace.
Janet G. Osteryoung, National Science Foundation: Could I just make one comment about this? I think people should be clear on the fact that the only reason NSF has a reasonable database for Ph.D.s is that somehow they have conned everybody into thinking that nobody can receive a Ph.D. unless they fill out this form and send it in. But this may be an insurmountable problem that you are addressing.
Mary Welsh Jordan, American Chemical Society: The ACS data look very good. We have survey responses from 50 percent of the Ph.D.s and 40 percent of the new graduates with bachelor' s and master's degrees. That is better than most surveys do, and compared with the national data that we have, it is pretty well right on. So I think they are considered very sound data, even by NSF and other organizations.
Janet Osteryoung: I think we all owe ACS a debt for persisting in collecting these data. There is no question in my mind that they are the best that exist.
Robert L. Lichter, Camille & Henry Dreyfus Foundation: I just want to elaborate a little bit on some of the discussion in our breakout group. The notion of immediacy of role models has to do with not only the speed of getting people into the higher positions. There is also a need for those in higher positions to have a more immediate relationship with people in the lower positions. It is fine to have women who are presidents of academic institutions and CEOs of corporations, but at the entry levels it is important to have women who are just above the women who are coming in as well. That is the other aspect of immediacy.
Another notion that was discussed in our breakout group was the idea of creating pathways of training. A number of corporations are preparing employees for management positions, but this seems woefully absent in academic institutions—indeed, it seems to be antithetical to the notion of an academic institution.