Heather Demarest posted the following in the comments thread on this post:
There is a lot of interest in our department (Rutgers) right now about the practical side of how to be a good ally and supportive colleague, especially in common, everyday situations. In response, our climate committee is organizing a “being a good ally” workshop. We’re hoping to hold two sessions, one for graduate students and one for faculty. We’re still looking for someone to bring in to moderate (alongside one of our faculty members). Any advice from people who have done this kind of workshop in the past would be appreciated.
Kudos to Rutgers for putting on what sounds like an awesome workshop. Let’s help them out with some suggestions, dear readers!
Ps – Anyone who hasn’t seen the Rutgers climate page should go check it out.
6 thoughts on “Allies at Rutgers”
Have you consulted with your Affirmative Action officer, who is likely someone in HR, and not faculty — she or he will be very informed about some of the issues you’re concerned with. If you have a non-faculty ombudsperson that too might be a good option. I think this is a great initiative, btw!
Would it be possible for Rutgers to put this event on a podcast ? I know it involves a little extra hassle but I think it would really help things in the profession as a whole !
How to be a good ally: to borrow words from a story Mark Lance tells (openly, so you can ask him): “don’t just fucking sit there”.
Rutgers is one of the winners of a National Science Foundation institutional transformation grant. They are trying to find ways to change the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields at Rutgers to make them better environments for women.
I think it is hard to imagine a better resource for your projects, It is actually exceptionally tricky to change the way a community behaves, even with all the good will in the world. Here’s their website:
Let me urge you to contact them.
In any case, looking at the NSF Advance program on the web might give you some ideas about just what’s involved in the transformation even of very small institutions, such as a department.
So I couldn’t resist looking at the Advance website at Rutgers, and one thing that pops up is the Institute for Women’s Leadership:
It does look to me as though there are powerful resources at Rutgers. It might be worth investigating them, and inquiring about resources for workshops.
We probably won’t create a podcast of the events since we want to make sure that we create a safe atmosphere for people to ask questions, etc. However, we do certainly hope to create a program template that we’ll be happy to share with other institutions! Thanks for your interest, and thanks everyone for all the suggestions.
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