Out of the loop…

Ok, I’ve been out of town at a meeting … as you know or have surmised by the lack of blog on my site. Anyway, since I’ve not been writing, I’ve also not been reading… but some of my favorite bloggers have been hard at work. I’ve been slowly catching up (I’ll never catch up with cracker-gate) but I came across a couple of posts caught my eye. Totally separate topics.

The first is a post by Physioprof over at Feministeabout gender inequity in science…and why legal remedies are inadequate to address this problem- so go on over there and read the whole thing. I read this post and found it a little scary how close PP has come to nearly exactly describing some of the experiences I have had as a female scientist. First, there was that time I met EminentMaleScientist in my area and his first words upon meeting me were… Would you like to sit on my lap? Those of us who would never say such a thing- have a terrible time responding to such a remark because it should just never happen in a professional setting. And second, at a meeting I attended I witnessed what can only be described as the interrogation of 4 young (its all relative) female scientists who were, by the way, the ONLY women who presented at the meeting… by the good old BOYS – which included the chairs of the sessions.!. I remember being completely horrified by this, and even years later the details of this experience stick with me.

The second is an excellent post by CAE over at The Alternative Scientist about networking… which is so right on target. Even though I am gainfully employed at the moment, in a career that I really enjoy- networking is still shockingly important. First, obviously, – I pick up collaborators, ideas, colleagues, potential hires to my department, and people to recommend me by doing this (to name a few). Second, you just never know what is around the next bend in terms of your career- so it is great to have some contacts set out in case you should one day decide you no longer find enjoyment in whatever you are doing at the moment. Third- it is good to know people who know people. I have a colleague that I have known since I was a student- who seems to know someone in every walk of science. As a student I wanted to do an internship in industry or public health- I asked this colleague if he might be able to point me in the right direction, and I walked out of his office with a list of names of people that he knew personally (most were people that he trained with, or that he trained)- in the organizations that I was interested in, and with my colleagues permission to use his name when contacting these people. This helped me enormously in setting up my internship and gave me some experience in a setting that I otherwise would not have had access too.

Ok, that’s enough for loose ends- go have a look at the post over at the alternative scientist…

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4 thoughts on “Out of the loop…

  1. I had missed PPs post. It was painful to read.

    One fact that effectively prevents women from protesting is how quickly one gets labeled “always concerned with gender issues” and dismissed. Both men and women participate in this labeling process.

  2. Asst Prof, female-

    UUUgh. Yes, I hate this. It is not a gender issue- it is an issue of some segments of the population- currently the majority- being allowed to behave badly while everyone else pretends it is not happening.

    CAE- It’s my pleasure. Networking is an unbelievably important skill that should be highlighted for its importance. It is difficult for some introverted scientists to get practice at…. easier for us loud, outgoing people. But necessary for all.

    Speaking of which- from your short tale on LOR I was thinking about a post on knowing when people WANT to help you- and allowing them to help you. I’ve had so many people help me, and at the time I didn’t recognize this right away from what they were telling me. From talking to other women on the lower ranks of the academic ladder I know this is a relatively common experience…

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