Harvard sees drop in women teachers

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by wdlove, Feb 22, 2004.

  1. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    Harvard University has seen a sharp drop in the proportion of women serving as junior professors in the humanities, according to newly released numbers, leaving officials anxious about a problem they had never expected to face in 2004.

    Only 21, or 35 percent, of the school's nontenured humanities professors are women, a drop from the mid-1990s, when women were nearly half of all assistant and associate professors in the humanities.

  2. Dros macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2003
    Harvard has a terrible reputation for promoting junior faculty. When you are up for tenure, they say, "Is this the top person in the field?" If you are, you become tenured. If you are not, they make an offer to the person identified as the top and drop you.

    I have known several people to turn down a job offer from Harvard for this reason. If you have or are thinking of having a family, why go someplace to only be uprooted after 6 years? For women, this factor probably plays a greater role in the decision. Harvard is a great university, but there are plenty of very good places to be a professor.
  3. Dippo macrumors 65816


    Sep 27, 2003
    Charlotte, NC
    Maybe they just don't want to be featured in the new porn mag...

    <shameless, I know>
  4. Billicus macrumors 6502a


    Apr 3, 2002
    Charles City, Iowa
    That seems a shame, but I'm sure they're hiring great professors. If those professors just happen to be male, so be it. :rolleyes:
  5. 512ke macrumors 6502a


    Sep 10, 2003
    Gender Balance

    Didn't I read recently in the New York Times that Harvard is experiencing a drop in the overall percentage of _male_ undergrad applicants?
  6. MrMacMan macrumors 604


    Jul 4, 2001
    1 Block away from NYC.
    boo hoo, the kick --s teachers you are hiring just happen not to be women.

    I don't see a problem... really.
  7. Grimace macrumors 68040


    Feb 17, 2003
    with Hamburglar.
    The process of attaining tenure is sooooooo much more complicated than people think. There are reviews upon reviews; expectations of publications & research etc - the same as a lot of the top schools.

    Women professors are also sought after from other universities that pay better. Believe it or not, Harvard has fairly substandard pay for its profs. I've seen a lot of our profs (men and women) lured to the private sector. ($$$)
  8. wdlove thread starter macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    I'm really surprised about the substandard pay for professors. I read that Harvard has the highest endowment in the United States if not the world. If I'm not mistaken the tuition and board if high among the Ivy league schools. They have to be hoarding it somewhere.
  9. Dros macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2003
    Harvard may have substandard pay compared to the private sector, but it still has high salaries compared to other universities. Here are the average salaries at these institutions:

    Harvard University
    Stanford University
    Univ. of Pennsylvania
    Cal Tech
    Princeton University

    Now, Harvard is known for blowing a pile of cash on superstars (the ones they bring in when they dump their junior faculty), which could bring the average above the median pay. And it is expensive to live in Cambridge compared to most places, but not more expensive than Palo Alto or Princeton.

    As for those others that say why does it matter if they hire men or women as long as they are great... if women are not coming or not getting hired and yet are doing the best stuff, then it is a problem if you want to be the best, as Harvard does.
  10. question fear macrumors 68020

    question fear

    Apr 10, 2003
    The "Garden" state
    depending on the dept in discussion its not always that easy...
    for a long time i was looking into getting a phd in philosophy and becoming a professor. my favorite philosophy professor in the whole world, while not discouraging me, did give me a lot of advice on how hard it was for her, as a woman to teach philosophy sometimes...it can be a fairly backwards dept, and she attributed her success to her work in ethics (which makes her more unique because many philosophy depts skew towards the metaphysical) and her work in feminist theory. Still, she was one of two female professors I had in four years of philosophy classes and the only one who was tenured. When I left she had convinced them to hire another one, but still...4yrs and only one tenured prof...wiht a gap of a year with no women in the dept. And I went to Brandeis, a fairly liberal institution.
    My point is that harvard may not be doing anything specific, but it points to a dearth of women being encouraged/welcomed in academic settings...not any specific discrimination, but more of an unwillingness/uncomfortableness about joining the old boys club, as many departments are these days.
    my .02

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