Childcare Resources in Houghton County

BHK Child Development Board (funded through grants).   BHK has several excellent child care centers where low-income children have first chance for slots.

Child Care Center US:

Houghton County Childcare Referral Agencies:
4C of Upper Peninsula
104 Coles Dr., Ste. F
Marquette MI 49855
Call (906) 228-3362 or Toll Free (866) 424-4532 (For In-State Use Only)
For more information, visit

Little Huskies Child Development Center

The Little Huskies Child Development Center,at Michigan Tech, managed by Gretchen’s House Childcare Centers,  is an on-campus pre-school and childcare center (infants/toddlers) serving the Michigan Tech community.  The facility is accredited by the National Association For the Education of Young Children.

From the website:

The Little Huskies Child Development Center exists to encourage and support each child to grow and develop in a caring and nurturing environment.  The Center will be an asset to the University and supports the first goal of the University’s Strategic Plan to attract and support world-class faculty, staff, and students.  The Center is one of the many people-focused work-life initiatives intended to provide an outstanding work and educational environment for Michigan Tech faculty, staff, and students.

Little Huskies gives priority to children whose parents or legal guardians are students or employees of Michigan Tech.

The Michigan Tech Little Huskies Childcare Center is located between the Student Development Complex tennis courts and the Forestry Complex on MacInnes Drive.  Square footage is 4,400 square feet.  The center is licensed for 44 children with a maximum of 8 infants, 16 toddlers and 20 pre-school age children.

What can be done about gender bias in hiring/promotion?

Individuals in positions of authority are in the best position to make a difference when it comes to assuring that all candidates for any position are evaluated fairly, despite the documented wide-spread existence of gender schemas  (Valian, 1999). Actions that can be taken include:

  • Ensure that all evaluation committees and department heads are aware of the research on gender bias;
  • Review all processes and procedures for the presence of gender bias; revise procedures found to contain gender bias;
  • Strive to achieve at least 25% women participants in all areas; research shows that gender bias is only mitigated when this threshold is exceeded;
  • Keep an eye on the women in units where they are underrepresented. Keep them productive by not allowing indifference to their “accumulation of disadvantage” to culminate in a negative review;
  • Champion the cause of elimination/reduction of gender bias – if leaders take this seriously, especially in open meetings, others will too.

A Study on the Status of Women Faculty in Science at MIT

From the MIT website, speaking of the influential 1999 report “A Study on the Status of Women Faculty in Science at MIT“:

President Charles M. Vest: I commend this study of Women Faculty in Science to all of my faculty colleagues. Please read it, contemplate its messages and information, and act upon it personally and collectively.

I learned two particularly important lessons from this report and from discussions while it was being crafted. First, I have always believed that contemporary gender discrimination within universities is part reality and part perception. True, but I now understand that reality is by far the greater part of the balance. Second, I, like most of my male colleagues, believe that we are highly supportive of our junior women faculty members. This also is true. They generally are content and well supported in many, though not all dimensions. However, I sat bolt upright in my chair when a senior woman, who has felt unfairly treated for some time, said “I also felt very positive when I was young.”

We can take pride in the candor of dialog that these women have brought to this issue and in the progress that we have made, but much remains to be done. Our remarkably diverse student body must be matched by an equally diverse faculty. Through our institutional commitment and policies we must redouble our efforts to make this a reality.

Why so slow? The Advancement of Women, by Virginia Valian

Many Michigan Tech WISE members know that I am a big fan of Virginia Valian’s book Why So Slow?  The Advancement of Women (MIT Press, 1999).  Valian’s well researched book gives women the data they need to first, convince themselves that they’re not imagining the disadvantage they feel, and second, the tools to make things better.  Here is some of what you will find there:

  • Department heads consistently evaluated resumes with male names higher than identical resumes that were presented with female names (Why so slow? Virginia Valian, p127, bottom)
  • When test subjects are presented with a group working together at a table, both male and female evaluators consistently identify a male at the head of the table as the “group leader”, but when a woman is seated at the head of the table, 50% of the time evaluators choose a male not seated at the head of the table as the “group leader.” (Why so slow? Virginia Valian, p127, top)
  • Even when an objectively measurable parameter, such as height, is evaluated, our unconscious biases influence our evaluations. In a study when subjects were asked to estimate heights of people in photographs, they consistently identified the women as shorter, and the men taller, than they actually were. (Why so slow, p6). There was no difference in the evaluations provided by male and female evaluators in this or the other studies. We all carry these schemas.
  • These effects are accentuated when women make up a small fraction (<25%) of those being evaluated (Why so slow, p140).

I have two copies in my office ready to loan to anyone who is interested in reading more of this quantitative and convincing book.

Chris Anderson Recognized by WEPAN

Some exciting news to share … Chris S. Anderson will be awarded the WEPAN University Change Agent Award at the upcoming national WEPAN conference in Bellevue, Washington on June 22, 2011.
This award honors an individual who has had positive impact within their academic institution with regard to the climate for women in science, technology, engineering, and math fields, with an emphasis on engineering.

Please join us in congratulating Chris on being selected for this very prestigious award!

The Ivory Ceiling of Service Work

By Joya Misra, Jennifer Hickes Lundquist, Elissa Holmes, and Stephanie Agiomavritis

“How does a successful associate professor with a distinguished publication record, a visible leadership role among women scientists on campus, and prestigious grant funding for interdisciplinary initiatives in graduate and undergraduate training as well as research feel about seeking promotion to full professor?”

Continue reading:

Congratulations Pushpa Murthy and Sheryl Sorby

Sorby has received North Carolina State University’s Orthogonal Medal for outstanding accomplishments in improving students’ spatial visualization skills.

The award is presented by the Technology, Engineering and Design Education Program in North Carolina State’s College of Engineering.

She is a professor of mechanical engineering-engineering mechanics and director of the Engineering Education and Innovation Research Group. In the field of engineering graphics, she is known for her studies of students’ visual abilities. With former faculty member Beverly Baartmans, Sorby developed a course to help engineering freshmen improve their visualization skills. The course not only improved their skills, but also resulted in better grades in physics, chemistry, calculus and computer science and improved the students’ retention rate. The course has been so successful that it is being adopted by a number of other universities. Read the full story…

Pushpa Murthy receive the 2011 Distinguished Service Award, for her efforts in helping Michigan Tech adopt a paid maternity leave policy in January 2010.

Murthy, a professor of chemistry and director of the Women in Science and Engineering group, was nominated for the honor by Faith Morrison, an associate professor of chemical engineering. After the maternity leave issue was raised at the spring 2009 WISE meeting, Murthy formed a working group with Morrison and Tammy Haut Donahue, associate professor of biomedical engineering, with the goal of finalizing a University policy by the first of the year. “I am amazed that this significant policy change could have been brought about with such speed,” Morrison wrote in her nomination. “I credit Pushpa Murthy.”

Murthy says there’s plenty of credit to be divvied up: Morrison and Donahue put in extraordinary effort, Human Resources staff contributed their expertise, and Provost Max Seel and President Glenn Mroz supported the measure. Read the full story…