September 14, 1998
Volume 51, No. 4
Issues in Progress:
President's Commission on the Status of Women
As is custom, President Bill Chace appeared at the first meeting of the commission for the 1998-99 academic year. He praised the work done last year and said, "In the three areas you set out to focus on, clear, definite progress was made in all."
Chace said he was especially eager to receive the results of the staff concerns committee's research on women's perceived barriers to advancement. "The more we can find out about this, the better," he added.
Chace then turned the meeting over to past Chair JoAn McKenzie, who announced that this year's chair, Joyce Jones, left The Carter Center to work at Augusta State University. That left chair-elect Mary Delong, assistant professor in the School of Public Health, to take over the reins one year early. Due to this turn of events, Delong said, she asked McKenzie to serve as her co-chair for the year. "We will work very hard together to try to make it a good year," Delong said.
Catherine Howett Smith, assistant director of the Carlos Museum, was voted chair-elect to fill Delong's previous position.
Melinda Keller and Nichole Chip agreed to serve as at-large members of the executive committee. Members agreeing to serve as liaisons to other groups included: Mozella Galloway, President's Commission on the Status of Minorities; Leigh Jacobsen, President's Commission on Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Concerns; Melinda Keller, Employee Council; Amy Zeldin, Campus Life Childcare Committee; Karen Fain, Emory College Staff Consortium; Mary Anne Lindskog, Tenure Committee; and Ali Crown, University Senate Safety Committee. The University Senate liaison will be announced later.
Kay Vydareny led off with the faculty concerns committee report, saying that this year the group intended to focus on a piece of the tenure equity issue that has been a longtime concern by looking at mentoring programs at other institutions and faculty leadership development seminars.
As Chace mentioned, the staff concerns committee will send out a questionnaire to female staff regarding perceived barriers to promotion, committee chair Kathy Reed said. Joan Herald, a professor in the School of Public Health, will work with one of her classes to execute the study and compile results.
Leigh Tillman Partington announced that the student concerns committee's major project for last year was completed over the summer. "The student handbook went out to all freshman and transfer students," she said. The committee will be working with the College Office and Campus Life to pass on "ownership" of the book and ensure that it is produced in the future. They also will be reviewing copy for modifications to provide good feedback to whatever office takes on the task. This year's projects include increasing faculty-student interaction and taking another look at the issue of sexual harassment and current student concerns about the issue.
Ali Crown announced the $25,000 grant to the Women's Center by the Eckerd Corp. and the company's plans to hold a symposium on campus Oct. 16-18. She also noted that women faculty will be invited to a welcome party at Houston Mill House on Sept. 23.
Delong announced that Rosalynn Carter has agreed to speak at the commission's spring event on April 14. Commission members voted to hold a fall event again this year, and five members volunteered to served on the committee to be led by chair-elect Howett Smith.