Category: ADVANCE Weekly Roundup

ADVANCE Weekly Roundup: Allyship for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Sense of Belonging

A critical component of promoting diversity, equity, inclusion, and sense of belonging (DEIS) is deep and meaningful collaboration that enacts allyship. This is a cooperative model whereby people from diverse backgrounds, especially those with power and privilege, join together in solidarity to overcome systems that disadvantage some groups, including unlearning assumptions about what constitutes “help” – particularly the kind that reinforces unwanted power structures.

One research article that explores this point is “Male allyship in institutional STEMM gender equity initiatives.” The article centers on men’s self-understanding as “champions for change,” the barriers and risks of this paradigm, and evolving perceptions among participants in the program. The concept of men as “champions” in gender-equity programs is not uncommon, and one such program is “Male Champions of Change.”

Initially, study participants tended to perceive “champions” as an empowering term that encouraged men’s involvement in social justice work. However, by the second year, participants began to perceive  “the gendered positioning of male championship is at odds with gender equity and structural change.” Rather, DEIS is about all of us and we all gain when we remove barriers to equity, including terms and concepts like “champions.” 

Today’s feature was shared with us by the ADVANCE Advocates team. If you have an article you think we should feature, please email it to advance-mtu@mtu.edu and we will consider adding it to the ADVANCE Weekly Roundup.

The ADVANCE Weekly Roundup is brought to you by ADVANCE at Michigan Tech, which is an NSF-funded initiative dedicated to improving faculty career success, retention, diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more about this week’s topic, our mission, programming efforts, and to check out our growing collection of resources, contact us at (advance-mtu@mtu.edu) or visit our website: www.mtu.edu/advance.

ADVANCE Weekly Roundup: Foundational Strategies to Create Equitable Systems for Faculty

As pandemic effects continue, fostering equitable climates to retain high quality faculty and staff is more important than ever.  The UMass ADVANCE team outlines four foundational strategies: communication, resources, flexibility, and adapting equity-informed strategies. Meaningful communicative interactions and supportive resources are critical to faculty and staff job satisfaction.  In addition, flexible policies and practices remain key through these challenging times, especially those that address pandemic circumstances and impacts with equity-informed strategies. One key equity-informed strategy for TPR committees can be summed up as “Do not let the 25 percent of faculty able to be more productive during the global pandemic set the standard for the 75 percent who are not able to do so.” (University of Michigan Report).  These foundational strategies can help create a climate that benefits all through promoting the value of their contributions, and therefore helps to retain high quality faculty and staff.  

Today’s feature was shared with us by the ADVANCE PI team. If you have an article you think we should feature, please email it to advance-mtu@mtu.edu and we will consider adding it to the ADVANCE Weekly Roundup.

The ADVANCE Weekly Roundup is brought to you by ADVANCE at Michigan Tech, which is an NSF-funded initiative dedicated to improving faculty career success, retention, diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more about this week’s topic, our mission, programming efforts, and to check out our growing collection of resources, contact us at (advance-mtu@mtu.edu) or visit our website: www.mtu.edu/advance.

ADVANCE Weekly Roundup: Eliminating the penalties for motherhood in STEM

The COVID-19 pandemic has called attention to the impediments that women in STEM face as mothers, including a multipronged “maternal wall” with career-long ramifications. This week’s Roundup takes you to a virtual conference, “Motherhood and career retention in STEM: Systemic barriers and actionable solutions” held on May 5, 2021. The event was sponsored by Mothers in Science and features lucid summaries and original research into the challenges and structural barriers for women in STEM and in faculty careers more broadly as well as actionable solutions. A summary of the conference issues appeared in The Scientist featuring Mothers in Science co-founder Isabel Torres, a PhD in genetics and mother of four. Refreshingly, the presentation videos often reveal the presence of children, a deliberate strategy to make visible the work that must go on behind-the-scenes by academic mothers.

Today’s feature was shared with us by the ADVANCE team. If you have an article you think we should feature, please email it to advance-mtu@mtu.edu and we will consider adding it to the ADVANCE Weekly Roundup.

The ADVANCE Weekly Roundup is brought to you by ADVANCE at Michigan Tech, which is an NSF-funded initiative dedicated to improving faculty career success, retention, diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more about this week’s topic, our mission, programming efforts, and to check out our growing collection of resources, contact us at (advance-mtu@mtu.edu) or visit our website: www.mtu.edu/advance.

ADVANCE Weekly Roundup: Teaching the Neurodiverse

Are you wondering how best to teach students who are on the spectrum?  In today’s ADVANCE Weekly Roundup, a college teacher who herself is on the spectrum corrects some myths about the neurodiverse and provides recommendations for teaching them. One of the myths is that autism is limited to young white men; but it affects people of all races, genders, and ages. Diagnoses in adults and in women are both on the rise. Also, autism affects each individual in different ways, so challenging the diagnosis because it doesn’t conform to stereotypes is a poor strategy. Read this week’s article on 10 Things Faculty Need to Understand about Autism to improve your classroom skills.

Today’s feature was shared with us by Sonia Goltz. If you have an article you think we should feature, please email it to advance-mtu@mtu.edu and we will consider adding it to the ADVANCE Weekly Roundup.

The ADVANCE Weekly Roundup is brought to you by ADVANCE at Michigan Tech, which is an NSF-funded initiative dedicated to improving faculty career success, retention, diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more about this week’s topic, our mission, programming efforts, and to check out our growing collection of resources, contact us at (advance-mtu@mtu.edu) or visit our website: www.mtu.edu/advance.

ADVANCE Weekly Roundup: STEMinists: Young role models for women in STEM

Today’s ADVANCE post celebrates the positive influence that faculty can have on the success of students. Specifically, we note how women and under-represented faculty in STEM serve as role models, whether through their presence in classrooms and labs or in professional associations such as WIA or AISES’s Lighting the Pathway program. In this American Psychological Association Science Brief on her research into women’s experiences in STEM fields, Dr. Isis Settles (U of Michigan) describes studies that document the structural and interpersonal challenges that discourage women from remaining in STEM fields. However, she also found evidence for a protective factor associated with resilience and concludes, “Strong gender identification may help women in STEM to function well (both psychologically and in terms of their academic/work performance).”

The website STEMinist offers an inspiring example of such an identity by providing dozens of short biographies of young women who have navigated college and secured fulfilling careers in STEM. It is heartening that these young women seem to hold a woman-in-STEM identity as central to their STEM careers and we applaud STEM women faculty as role models.

Today’s feature was shared with us by David Flaspohler If you have an article you think we should feature, please email it to advance-mtu@mtu.edu and we will consider adding it to the ADVANCE Weekly Roundup.

The ADVANCE Weekly Roundup is brought to you by ADVANCE at Michigan Tech, which is an NSF-funded initiative dedicated to improving faculty career success, retention, diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more about this week’s topic, our mission, programming efforts, and to check out our growing collection of resources, contact us at (advance-mtu@mtu.edu) or visit our website: www.mtu.edu/advance.

ADVANCE Weekly Roundup: Safety is everyone’s responsibility

Safety in any workplace, whether corporate or academic, is not achieved  by just providing students, faculty and staff with appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) to conduct their research or work safely. Creating safety in the workplace also includes intentionally crafting a psychologically safe environment where individuals feel they can speak up, express their concerns, and be heard. The author of “The Fearless Organization” describes how the culture of psychological safety is evident when individuals can voice half-finished thoughts, are willing to admit lack of knowledge, listen humbly, and engage in dynamic dialogue to learn and adopt what is best for students, faculty, and staff.

The author notes, “As organizations seek to convert diversity into inclusion and belonging, psychological safety is increasingly important. Without psychological safety, diversity does not automatically mean people can bring their full selves to the work.” Thus, you can think of psychological safety as the PPE for a diverse and inclusive workplace. The difference here is that the entire group provides protection rather than requiring each individual to protect themselves.

Today’s feature was shared with us by the Advocates and Allies Advisory Board (A3B). If you have an article you think we should feature, please email it to advance-mtu@mtu.edu and we will consider adding it to the ADVANCE Weekly Roundup.

The ADVANCE Weekly Roundup is brought to you by ADVANCE at Michigan Tech, which is an NSF-funded initiative dedicated to improving faculty career success, retention, diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more about this week’s topic, our mission, programming efforts, and to check out our growing collection of resources, contact us at (advance-mtu@mtu.edu) or visit our website: www.mtu.edu/advance.

ADVANCE Weekly Roundup: Metastudy on Biases in Student Teaching Evaluations

Research into Student Teaching Evaluations often focus on what such evaluations actually measure and the inherent biases about instructors that can disadvantage or advantage particular faculty. This article in Inside Higher Ed reports on a metastudy that addresses both measurement and equity biases in student evaluations and suggests strategic responses for higher education institutions. One issue of concern is the relative lack of research attention to issues of racial and intersectional identity bias–most equity bias research is on gender. The metastudy found a “gender affinity” bias that may extend to race as well. One recommendation is that administrators should temper reliance on student evaluations with alternative and complementary assessments for evaluating teaching such as teaching portfolios and reviews of pedagogical materials. 

Today’s feature was shared with us by Dr. Cinzia Cervato, Professor at Iowa State University and PI of the ADVANCE Partnership Grant which includes Michigan Tech. If you have an article you think we should feature, please email it to advance-mtu@mtu.edu and we will consider adding it to the ADVANCE Weekly Roundup.

The ADVANCE Weekly Roundup is brought to you by ADVANCE at Michigan Tech, which is an NSF-funded initiative dedicated to improving faculty career success, retention, diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more about this week’s topic, our mission, programming efforts, and to check out our growing collection of resources, contact us at (advance-mtu@mtu.edu) or visit our website: www.mtu.edu/advance.

ADVANCE Weekly Roundup: Hispanic Heritage Month: Celebrate STEM Latinx researchers while also noting gender disparities

Hispanic Heritage Month is an opportunity to recognize the accomplishments of Hispanic and Latinx scientists and engineers whose groundbreaking discoveries have advanced our knowledge.  This article provides a gender diverse list of role models for students across a variety of STEM careers.  We encourage you to feature these notable scientists in your courses.

Today’s feature was shared with us by the ADVANCE PI Team. If you have an article you think we should feature, please email it to advance-mtu@mtu.edu and we will consider adding it to the ADVANCE Weekly Roundup.

The ADVANCE Weekly Roundup is brought to you by ADVANCE at Michigan Tech, which is an NSF-funded initiative dedicated to improving faculty career success, retention, diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more about this week’s topic, our mission, programming efforts, and to check out our growing collection of resources, contact us at (advance-mtu@mtu.edu) or visit our website: www.mtu.edu/advance.

ADVANCE Weekly Roundup: Do you promote safe space for discussions of authorship that are fair and equitable?

It is well documented that women are underrepresented in senior author positions on published and scholarly works, and more harshly treated in the peer review process. Women are also more likely to be involved in disagreements about authorship than men, and face greater negative consequences of such disagreements. This is one of the findings reported in this week’s article that focuses on the outcomes of over 5000 survey responses in the fields of social sciences, medical sciences, and natural sciences and engineering. Awareness of these issues is critical if we are to promote more equitable attribution of work, and recognize the need to discuss authorship in an open and fair manner.

Today’s feature was shared with us by Glenn Larkin, Senior Research Scientist in the College of Forest Resources and Environmental Science. If you have an article you think we should feature, please email it to advance-mtu@mtu.edu and we will consider adding it to the ADVANCE Weekly Roundup.

The ADVANCE Weekly Roundup is brought to you by ADVANCE at Michigan Tech, which is an NSF-funded initiative dedicated to improving faculty career success, retention, diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more about this week’s topic, our mission, programming efforts, and to check out our growing collection of resources, contact us at (advance-mtu@mtu.edu) or visit our website: www.mtu.edu/advance.

ADVANCE Weekly Roundup: Gender disparities in research dissemination persist even in social media

Social media has become a powerful network of sharing and featuring scientific results. A recent article in PNAS tracked online social media mentions of published scientific findings and discovered that research published by women doesn’t get the same number of posts or mentions as research published by male scientists. Women’s representation in social media is lower than would be expected based upon their publication activity.  This discovery is consistent with research findings previously discussed in our Weekly Roundup post concerning citation rates. Given this disparity, universities may need to reconsider using mentions and citation rates as a measure of performance.

Today’s feature was shared with us by the ADVANCE PI Team. If you have an article you think we should feature, please email it to advance-mtu@mtu.edu and we will consider adding it to the ADVANCE Weekly Roundup.

The ADVANCE Weekly Roundup is brought to you by ADVANCE at Michigan Tech, which is an NSF-funded initiative dedicated to improving faculty career success, retention, diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more about this week’s topic, our mission, programming efforts, and to check out our growing collection of resources, contact us at (advance-mtu@mtu.edu) or visit our website: www.mtu.edu/advance.