The Psychology of Black Women Newsletter Summer 2011
2011 APA CONFERENCE IS HERE!
Meet your section sisters in the hospitality suite
Balancing parenthood & your career
Sharing our secrets for success in both spheres
Mother of 5 earns PhD and maintains familial happiness One womanâ€™s experience with children during grad school
THE MOMMY ISSUE A PUBLICATION OF SECTION 1: THE PSYCHOLOGY OF BLACK WOMEN DIVISION 35: SOCIETY FOR THE PSYCHOLOGY OF WOMEN AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION
THE PSYCHOLOGY OF BLACK WOMEN NEWSLETTER A publication of SECTION 1, DIVISION 35 AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION Summer 2011 Vol. 2, No. 2
TABLE OF CONTENTS Section 1 News & Updates Issue Welcome Message
APA Conference Review Divison 35 Hospitality Suite Schedule of Events
So you think you can dance? Gathering celebrates 25 years of the Ethnic Minority Division
Grad Student Award Winner
Mommy Issue Articles Making small steps toward campus daycare
Campus daycare options shrinking around the world
Quick Facts: Professional Black women breastfeeding 8 Parenthood in grad school and other tips for maintaining a parenting/ work balance 9 Graduating with doctoral degree and raising 5 children
You are a mother or other mother. A daughter or son. A partner or spouse. An acquaintance or best friend. There are so many identities that it is often difficult to juggle your life and remain successful in our field. But you are not alone! Consider joining Section 1: The Psychology of Black Women. Our section creates a supportive space for anyone interested in contributing to scientific understandings of Black women. We also welcome those seeking to increase the quality of education, available training opportunities and overall status of Black women in the field. You will be a part of a supportive network of men and women who understand the importance of your career and other life balance concerns, A great way to find out more and become involved in The Psychology of Black Women is by attending our events at the Annual American Psychological Association Conference in Washington this August. On page 2 of this newsletter you’ll find a listing of some of the seminars and symposiums we’re involved with. In addition, your official conference guide will list the more intimate sessions specifically addressing Black women’s experiences and concerns that we’re hosting throughout the conference. So please be sure to drop by and get to know us. We would love to have you join and become an active member in our community! A membership application is located at the end of this newsletter. We’re looking forward to having you onboard!
Upcoming Events & Opportunities
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Division 35 - Society for the Psychology of Women (SPW)/Association for Women in Psychology (AWP) Hospitality Suite Schedule of Events *Washington Marriott Metro Center Hotel ~ 775 12th Street NW, Washington, DC 20005 (Presidential Suite) Feel free to come by, listen and/or join in what is happening, find out ways to become more involved in AWP and Division 35, and shop at our BOOK SALE! All sessions are open for all to attend unless stated otherwise. Thursday, 8/4 (9 a.m.-5 p.m.) 9:00 to 9:50 10:00 to 10:50 11:00 to 11:50 12:00 to 12:50
1:00 to 1:50
2:00 to 2:50 3:00 to 3:50 4:00 to 4:50 5:00 to 5:50
Div. 35 Sections Social Hour Section Presidents Section 4 (Lesbian, Bisexual & Trans Womyn’s Issues) meeting Christine Smith Section 5 and Division of Women of AAPA Discussion/Mentoring Hour Diane Hayashino Section 5 (Psychology of Asian Pacific American Women) Business Meeting Diane Hayashino African American Women & Voices Across Generations: Have We Been Here Before? Beverly Greene, Francis Trotman, and Karen Wyche Feminist Perspectives on Trafficking: A Documentary Film and Discussion Michelle Contreras Trafficking of Women and Girls Discussion Rakhshanda Saleem
Friday, 8/5 (9 a.m.-5 p.m.) OPEN Section 1 (Psychology of Black Women) Meeting & Networking Cathy Thompson Section 3 (Concerns of Hispanic Women/Latinas) Meeting and Networking Hour Carrie Castaneda-Sound Self Care among African American Women: How do we create and maintain our connections with our sister friends once we get careers, partnerships, and families going? Cathy Thompson Discussion about Ways to Get Involved With AWP Nina Nabors
Saturday, 8/6 (9 a.m.-5 p.m.)
Sunday, 8/7 (9-11 a.m.)
What’s Next?: Student Career PanelJennifer O’Neil
50% off Book Sale!! 50% off Book Sale!!
Student CV Review Jennifer O’Neil Thinking Outside the Box – Career Flexibility f Sam Slaughter (Early Career Psychologists Committee) OPEN 35th Anniversary of PWQ Convention Center, Rm. 158 A complimentary lunch will be provided! Awards Announcement Nina Nabors (AWP Collective Coordinator)
Feminist Forum OPEN Nina Nabors (AWP Collective Thema Bryant-Davis’s Coordinator) and Thelma Bryant-Davis Presidential Address (Div. 35 President) Location TBA Publishing Pointers OPEN Irene Frieze (Sex Roles), Mary Crawford Div. 35 Business Meeting (Feminism & Psychology), &Jan Yoder Renaissance Hotel Congressional (Psychy of Women Quarterly) Hall B Section 6 Business Meeting Student Meeting and OPEN Meeting of Indigenous Women Leadership Fair Iva GreyWolf Jennifer O’Neil Div. 35 business meeting CLOSED CLOSED CLOSED Div. 35 Social Hour & Awards Ceremony Renaissance Hotel Congressional Hall A
SUITE CLOSES AT 11 a.m.
If you plan to attend the APA Convention in DC this year you have to put the the Division 45 (Society for the Psychological Study of Ethnic Minority Issues) and the Division 35 (Section 1) Dance on your schedule. This gathering will be taking place Saturday August 6, 2011 from around 8pm-1am. This dance is a bit different from previous events! Division 45 will be turning 25 yrs old and there will be a huge celebration with a cake, dance off between students and professionals, light refreshments, door prizes, and lots more!! To purchase tickets or further details please visit http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/182019 or contact Julii Green (firstname.lastname@example.org) for further details!!
MEMBER SPOTLIGHT: Grad Student Award Winner Have you ever wondered how another woman got to where she is in her career? Or have you ever thought about how others are able to negotiate working in the field of psychology? The Member Spotlight gives you a glimpse into the experiences of other Section 1 members. Every month we will feature different members of our community, highlighting their recent activities and accomplishments.
Each issue we spotlight a Section1 member. We look for members that are is doing great things. Let us know if there is a member we should spotlight!
This issue we are introducing The Division 35 (Society for the Psychology of Women), Section 1 (Black Women) Graduate Student award winner, Jennifer O'Neil. We honored to highlight the work of this gifted scholars as she provides important and needed insight into the psychology of Black women and the role of gender in Black women’s lives. Commemoration of Jennifer and her work will consist of acknowledgement at the 2011 APA convention, a plaque and monetary award. Jennifer shares her story below In August of 2011, I will receive my Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Virginia. My research interests are broadly based in ethnic differences in mental illness and how those differences affect women and mothers across the lifespan. As such, I developed a program of research that examined maternal depression across a diverse low-income sample. For my Master’s thesis, I examined ethnic differences in the relationship between parental efficacy and maternal depression. The research for the current award comes from my dissertation which focused on the trajectory of and risk and positive factors for depression in African American mothers. Over the course of my time in graduate school, my research and clinical interests were broadened by my experiences. In March of 2010, I participated in a research exchange at the University of Zurich in Switzerland focused on the predictors of the courses of PTSD in a sample of German political prisoners which sparked my interest in the psychology of veterans. I am currently completing my clinical internship at the Jesse Brown Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Chicago, IL and will start a postdoctoral fellowship at the Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Hospital in Houston, TX in August. To learn more about Section 1 of Division 35’s various awards and honors, please visit our website at: www.apa.org/divisions/div35/Sections/1/section1.html Or join us on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Black-Women -in-Psychology/143081281345?ref=ts.
Small steps towards campus child care For women researchers, child care can be a major obstacle to getting back to the lab. Virginia Gewin looks at the options for working mums. by Virginia Gewin Dedicated fellowships, mentoring networks and tenure-adjustment programmes have been designed to promote women in science. But Anne Bertolotti, a geneticist at the Ecole Normale SupĂŠrieure in Paris, sees only one realistic way to meet that goal: provide day care. Tiny tots can prove formidable foes to a woman's academic career aspirations. Without affordable child-care options, long hours and low pay force many postdocs to make an unfortunate choice between work or motherhood. Although Paris offers government-sponsored day care, demand exceeds supply. With care for one child already costing 25% of her income, Bertolotti faces typical concerns as she seeks a spot for her second child â€” availability, accessibility and cost. The shortage of high-quality, affordable day care is enough to make academic parents cry. The US National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) says that, along with retirement plans and insurance, child care is one of the top three issues raised in surveys. Although on-site child-care facilities are rare at research institutions, a number of universities have recognized the recruitment, retention and employee-satisfaction benefits they offer. Unfortunately, old-fashioned attitudes and cost remain barriers at most institutions.
The waiting lists for campus facilities is a testament to their success. HutchKids, a non-profit facility at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle, Washington, has 120 slots for infants and children. More than 130 kids are currently on the waiting list. "The kind of work that scientists do, especially here at the Hutch, demands that they have quality child care," says HutchKids director Nancy Myles. Like many US universities, Princeton is taking baby steps to deal with the issue. Although Princeton has offered on-site child care for decades, a recent baby boom has increased demand. A health and wellbeing task force, created three years ago, estimated a need to double capacity. In the planning phase of the expansion, huge questions remain about where and how to run such facilities on campus. The situation is similar in Britain. Although some UK universities, such as the University of Nottingham, offer non-profit day-care services, the demand for centres nearby is so high that private entities fill the gap. In the past few years, four new day-care centres have opened around the University of Cambridge. In Japan, day care is almost exclusively private. With dozens of research institutes and universities in a city of 10 million people, some Tokyo academics have to travel for up to an hour outside the city to find a place. With one of the most challenging child-care situations in Europe, fewer than 5% of German research institutes and universities offer day care.
Home from home The luxury of on-site day care is offered by a handful of research institutes and universities in countries such as the United States, Britain, Germany and Sweden. A few countries, including Sweden and France, have government-run facilities. But most academics around the world rely on private facilities. More than one-third of US postdocs have children, yet only 10% of the 70 US research institutions informally surveyed by the NPA offer child-care facilities.
Those that do, such as Heidelberg's European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) and the University of Heidelberg, find that it often makes the difference in researcher recruitment. Jan Ellenberg, an EMBL cell biologist, says that the lack of a public day-care system in Germany would have made it impossible for him and his wife — both faculty members — to work. "The best scientists will have choices on the job market, and having excellent day-care facilities makes EMBL a more competitive employer," he says.
services, they sometimes limit access to postdocs and graduate students, giving priority to faculty members. Indeed, organizations that actively recruit husband-and-wife research teams, such as the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, use child-care centres as an enticement. "We're starting to recognize it's not just a women's issue, it's a dual-career family issue," says Kim Orth, a biomedical researcher there. Some facilities, such as the parent-run HutchKids, are first come, first served. Even so, high costs can make campus facilities inaccessible to postdocs and students.
Tough decisions A recent survey by Germany's Center of Excellence for Women in Science suggested that more than 40% of academic women choose not to have children; many others leave academia. Although remnants of the former socialist system still provide options for women in eastern Germany, academics in the west depend on parents willing to donate the time and energy to build and run their own day-care centres. Christa Schleper, now an environmental biologist at the University of Bergen in Norway, and her husband spent countless unpaid hours maintaining such a centre while working at the Darmstadt University of Technology in Germany. In Norway, surprisingly, Schleper faces a similar problem. Although Scandinavian governments are familyfriendly, places in public day-care centres are increasingly hard to find in some Norwegian cities. In fact, the availability of child care has become a hot political issue in Norway's upcoming elections. Government-run programmes, such as those in Scandinavia, are accessible to everyone. That is not always the case in on-campus facilities. Although many US research organizations offer on-campus child-care
Paying the price With campus day-care centres costing roughly $1.5 million a year to run, it is not surprising that most institutions have yet to address the issue. Indeed, cost remains the biggest hurdle — particularly in countries such as the United States and Britain. Postdocs there can spend half or more of their salaries on child care, whereas continental Europeans and Japanese are more likely to pay 10–25%, thanks to generous government or institutional subsidies. The Hutch offers a subsidy of $250 per month at its own (or any other nearby accredited) facility, lowering the cost from almost 50% to roughly 35% of annual salary. The NPA found only three other US institutions — the California Institute of Technology, Fox Chase Cancer Research Center and Johns Hopkins University — that offer similar subsidies. Princeton University offers need-based financial aid, rather than a straight subsidy. Qualifying families pay just 10% if combined annual incomes are less than $50,000. Britain has started to offer a government voucher equivalent to £100 (US$184) per month to help lower costs. But postdocs at UK campuses can expect to pay about 30% of their salary for infant day care. The University of Nottingham has offered university-sponsored child-care services for ten years, but demand has still led to the creation of private centres on campus. Government subsidies, particularly generous ones such as in Sweden, make a huge dent in child-care costs. Stockholm's Karolinska University Hospital offers day care for employees that is the equivalent of about 5–10% of a postdoc's salary: only 10% of the real cost. The remainder is paid by tax initiatives. Norwegians pay more for child care and the subsidies are designed to encourage women to stay at home for a longer period of time — another contentious political issue. Continued on next page…
Biology lab’s childcare center asks for 10% of parent’s income
… continued from previous page. With government help, parent-organized day care in Germany usually ends up being inexpensive. The EMBL facility is unusual in that it is open to all faculty members and postdocs and asks 10% of parents' combined income, whatever that is. It also offers other benefits for breastfeeding mothers (see 'Express delivery' on next page). The NPA has found that child care remains a 'mummy matter', with women postdocs paying almost double the care costs that men pay. This has led the association's president, Alyson Reed, to speculate that more men must have access to partial child care from a spouse or relative. Access to affordable child care opens the door to research-minded women. As Bertolotti puts it: "Knowing her child is well cared for frees her mind to focus on the science at hand."
Report finds decrease in on- site campus daycare; institutions come up with creative solutions Research has already shown that greater access to oncampus child-care services would increase opportunities for students who are also parents to complete their post secondary education. Also, family-friendly campuses help promote the recruitment and retention of the best and the brightest faculty. It allows faculty parents succeed as scholars and teachers despite the stresses of family life, and greatly contribute to the continued excellence of the university. However, a report by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research found the percentage of both two- and fouryear campuses with on-site child-care centers declined from 2002 to 2009. Those working at community colleges are particularly vulnerable as these institutions are less likely to have on-site child care than are four-year colleges. Fortunately, some institutions and corporations are coming up with other ways to support faculty with children. For example, at Stanford University junior faculty membersincluding adjuncts and clinical faculty- can request up to $21,000 annually to help pay child-care expenses for children under 5 years old. So long as their household income is below $175,000 a year, the university will pay $5,000 to $20,000 for one child of a faculty member, and up to $1,000 total extra for any additional children once childcare receipts are submitted. Michigan's Calvin College doesn't provide financial incentives, but has a family friendly work period policy. Faculty parents at all ranks are given the opportunity to work half or three-quarters time. Twelve professors are currently working a reduced load, including assistant professors who find this as an ideal way to juggle pregnancy and parenthood while on the tenure track. All graduate students and faculty members should contact their university’s human resources to find out about their institution’s family friendly policies. Also, take time to visit relevant campus centers to build connections with organizations addressing parenting issues. This includes any campus based child care services, research centers that work on children’s issues, or Women’s Centers and programs.
Reprinted with permission from Nature Jobs. For the full article please visit http://www.nature.com/naturejobs/ 2005/ 050915/full/nj7057-446a.html 7 6
QUICK FACTS: Breastfeeding working & student moms Race & Ethnicity African American mothers are less likely than white or Latina women to breastfeed (CDC, 2008) 65% of black women nursed their infants at some point, compared to 36% 14 years ago (CDC, 2008) Only 20% of black mothers reach the government's target goal of exclusively breastfeeding when their infants are six months old (CDC, 2008) Class & Education Mothers with routine jobs and unfavorable working conditions are less likely to initiate breast-feeding compared with women in higher managerial and professional occupations (Hansen, 2007) Mothers from more privileged social classes and with more educational qualifications are more likely to breast-feed; however, maternal education a predictor of breast-feeding take-up (Skafida, 2009) Campus & Work Spaces Business variables, such as experience working with women who have breastfed and knowledge of other businesses who have employed breastfeeding women, appeared to be better predictors of a positive level of support toward breastfeeding in the workplace than personal attributes, such as age, education level, and personal history with a spouse or friend who breastfed (Bridges, 1997)
Conservative attitudes prevail on some campuses as personal spaces, such as infant home or family car, are regarded as more appropriate for breast feeding than public campus settings by both students and university staff (Moore, 2008) Campuses are beginning address mothers’ need to breast feed by creating spaces; includes Tulane University’s Breast Feeding Program Campus Rooms, UC- Berkley Campus Lactating Rooms, Columbia University Breastfeeding Support Program, and Western Washington University’s Breast Feeding Rooms
EXPRESS DELIVERY by Virginia Gewin
As women choose to breastfeed for longer — citing numerous health benefits — the availability of dedicated areas for them to pump milk is increasingly an issue in the United States. Women often have to hunt for private spots to pump, such as vacant offices, service corridors or, most often, the toilet. Scandinavian culture is less restrictive. "There are few social
barriers to sitting and nursing a baby during a seminar or at a lunch or even parking your buggy in the hallway," says Jessica Marks, a biologist at the University of Bergen in Norway. And in Germany, women are allowed paid breastfeeding breaks — even if they have to travel 10 kilometres to reach their child. Reprinted with permission from Nature Jobs. For the full article please visit www.nature.com/naturejobs/ 2005/ 050915/full/nj7057-446a.html
Deciding when to have a baby and an overwhelmed PhD student with baby gets advice Faculty and graduate students answer questions about motherhood on the Berkley Parents Network I am currently the Graduate Dean at Berkeley and a researcher on the effects of family formation on the careers of academics. I am also a mother of two grown children and navigated these issues while they were growing up. Despite intensive research in this area it is still difficult to answer the question often asked of me by my graduate students, "when is the best time to have a baby?" What do you think? Before women begin graduate programs should they be given more clear information about the challenges of managing family and career in academia? Should more be done to help graduate students make decisions about the timing of these issues? What can current professors do to better encourage promising young women to stay in the "pipeline" to satisfying tenured jobs? And finally, when do you think is the best time to have a baby? Response 1: I'm in the middle of this now. I'm a postdoc with a 22 month old son. I definitely DO NOT think that only women should be given information about challenges of managing a family and a career in academia. This sends a message that (a)it is the woman's responsibility to manage the family and (b) it's too hard so you have to decide RIGHT NOW (before even starting grad school or in many cases meeting the future dad) which it is going to be. In my case, my husband stays home with our son and his career has been much more affected than mine. However, I must admit that I had rather naively assumed that because my husband was staying at home my career would sail on practically uninterupted...NOT the case. 3 months of maternity leave plus 6 months of sleep deprivation plus a year (okay in my case 6 months) of having to pump breast milk every 3 hours plus having to be home at a reasonable hour so my husband doesn't go insane 9 6
equals delaying my search for an assistant professor position by a year. I think what would help women with babies the most is a break for both genders when it . to assessing productivity at the end of a four (or comes five or six) year postdoc if they've started a family. I haven't started looking for academic positions, and it may turn out that I don't continue in academia. I do feel that if this is the case it will have nothing to do with the birth of my son. Response 2: I think the best answer to that question is that there is never a *convenient* time to have a baby. Like any of the people in our lives we come to care about, your child will be a challenge from time to time and will demand your time and attention on days when your focus might have been elsewhere. He or she will also get sick at the absolute most inconvenient time and will stay awake on the nights you most need to burn the midnight oil. But, that being said, being in academia and having a child can be especially rewarding for all parties concerned. I (mostly) have the summer to be with my family and the hours I spend away from home working are far less than when I had a 9-5 job. My child has a great example of what it means to be committed to the process of learning and has contact with a group of brilliant and creative adults. It is tough. I spend a lot of late nights reading and writing and a lot of bleary eyed mornings afterwards playing with the kiddos in the park. I have found a few things to be crucial: - get or keep your sense of humor, you won't survive without it - learn to be in the moment, if you spend the time you are writing worrying about your child's cough, nobody wins. And, by contrast, if you spend the day your child first starts to walk wondering if you'll get tenure, you've cheated yourself and him/her. - plan ahead as much as you can, but cultivate a sense of flexibility. Keep a bunch of frozen dinners on hand and be prepared for the day your toddler will only be satisfied with one for breakfast. - for every person who rolls their eyes after you miss a deadline because you were busy holding a child who was feverish and inconsolable, there will be two who have been there and give you a pat on the shoulder and the understanding look that gets you through today.
up in de facto single parent academic households, whose parents teach at other campuses in other cities and even other countries, live with their fathers? UC lags far, far behind the many state university systems that compete with us and the Ivies by offering good jobs to almost all spouses who want them. Providing excellent affordable daycare is also a more encouraging sign than warning female students entering doctoral programs of the hazards ahead, something that will just confirm to their professors of either gender that they don't belong there. Not to mention healthcare. Just today I overheard a grad student describing how his wife was delaying a second prenatal exam because they could not afford it! That being said, the two best times, in my experience/observation, to have a baby as a female academic are early or late, that is as a graduate student or as a tenured faculty member. If one does so as a graduate student in the humanities, one needs to be able to focus to finish a dissertation, but the extra year or two will not cost you much professionally. What will cost you enormously is, prejudice against women and against mothers in particular aside, the flexibility to apply for jobs around the country, unless you have an usually accomodating spouse, and to move up the ladder to a second university quickly once you have relocated from the institution where you attended graduate school. If you wait until after tenure, it may well be too late, but by this point you have a pretty big buffer. Your career will probably go on autopilot for several years, and if you teach at Berkeley you can still expect all kinds of extra trouble in moving up the ladder, but you are in a far, far stronger position. Of the mothers (out of twice that number of women) in my department, all fit one of these two models. The percentage of fathers is not any higher, by the way, and while I do not know all the details, I suspect it is largely true of them as well. Response 4: I don't think there is a best time to have a baby, regardless of your career. I just turned 31, my daughter will be 10 next month, I've been a single mom for over 3 years and I am currently a postdoc at UCB. Continued on next pageâ€Ś
Response 3: First and most importantly, this is NOT a women's issue. As long as we single out women in discussing this topic, we let men off the hook. Especially in the sciences, many of them continue to think it normal or even better to have a stay at home spouse, something that almost no academic woman has, and this preconception often discourages them from taking their female colleagues and students seriously. Moreover, how many of the children growing 10 6
Response 5: When the best time to have children is, my opinion is that it is NOT at the same time that one plans to start a tenure-track position. Either before, when one is a graduate student or postdoc and has a bit more free time (although the grad students might not believe me here, it's true), or after one has tenure and the pressure has eased somewhat, would be better. And to keep women in the professorial pipeline? My opinion is the single most effective move would be to make part-time positions a real option for women (and men, for that matter). My goal all through graduate school was to have a tenure-track position; however, I have a child now, and do not see any possibility of working the number of hours such a position (full-time) would require. 35-40 hours a week is all I have in me; 60 or more is physically impossible. Although the current practice is to grant faculty members who have a child a semester, or perhaps a year, of reduced time, this would not have worked for me. My child is 4 years old, and there is no time during his life when I would have been able to work more than 40 hours per week. Although my evidence is anecdotal, I have spoken with a fair number of female graduate students who are considering both having children and starting a career, and with only one or two exceptions, all of them feel as I do about the amount of work they think is reasonable for them. The doubt they express about their ability to do the amount of work required to get tenure is nearly universal.
Having my daughter when I was 21 has not hurt my career; rather, it made me focus on my work and end goals. Compared to my peers, I have published, participated in teaching and conferences at about the same level - and I have interviewed for 4 tenure-track positions, so I know my CV has faired well through a child. To be completely honest, given my personality, I'm not sure when I would have planned to have a child - I would be facing the same question of the best time. For me, the best time was during undergraduate school. As I have moved through the various stages of academia (undergrad, grad, postdoc), I have come to realize that the stress tends to increase as you move through - and have encouraged other couples to go ahead and have kids during grad school rather than wait. Yes, the degree may take longer - but many faculty are more than happy to work with students on a different schedule - and in the end it probably won't impact your career to have spent an extra year or so in grad school. I think staying in the academy requires dedication and a realization that change comes from within - the structure appears rigid from outside but once you are in the system, there is more flexibility. As more and more families with different structures become part of the system, the entire system should become more flexible and family-friendly over time. Yes, I think there should be more opportunities for discussion of post-grad school life - for both men and women - and also concrete solutions/ideas for tenure-track/family issues from those who have already been there.
Response 6: I agree that there is never a convenient time to have a child. In regards to getting a tenure track position, probably the very worst time is when you are just out of grad school, and in a temporary teaching or administration job. You are working full-time with little time to 'write', the universal tenure clock is already a year or two into its life span, and you show up pregnant at the interview for a tenure track position. There are at least a few of us who got derailed this way. Is there any reason to hope for (or to desire) re-entry programs? Martha I'm a grad student currently writing a dissertation, with a new baby (first child). Having a baby has made me rethink my career choice mainly because I don't know if I'll be able to finish my degree. And by the time I did, I'd probably be ready to have a second child but would also be entering the job market. I'm stressed out by the difficulty all grad students feel starting their dissertation, but the internal pressure and the emotional ambivalence and questions about my future make it even harder to get to work. And I'd rather be with my baby than work all day anyway. I'd be interested in hearing perspectives, thoughts, and feelings from others who are or have been in a similar position. Thanks. Response 1: Well, I can give you my experience. I got pregnant, not planned but not exactly unplanned, when I was in my 6th year of grad school at Berkeley and almost ready to go on the job market in English. I had my baby in February, took that semester and most of the summer off, and then started him in daycare in the fall and went on the job market and back to work on my diss. I was lucky enough to get a job that year, and worked hard and finished the diss as my baby turned ,one. That summer, I was surprised to find that, oops, I was pregnant again! This time pretty much unplanned-I had been hoping to settle into my new job for a year before having another. Anyway, I gave birth in March of this year, got a sub for my course (I was only teaching one) and again took the summer off and started baby #2 part time in day care this fall. This wasn't the way I imagined starting my family, necessarily, but I'm not sure if it didn't work just as well as any other way. And there are many things about the experience--namely the flexibility to take several months off or partially off--that could only happen in an academic job or in grad school. I was lucky enough to have a partner that was working full time and could support me financially and emotionally during some of the rough stretches as well. For me, it was pretty definite that I wanted to go back to teaching. I did/do miss spending all my time with my baby, but I also get a lot of rewards out of my research and teaching that I do not want to give up. It helped that I got a lot of external support and validation
of my research, so I felt like my dissertation was a project that was valuable to others as well as to me. Considering the uncertain nature of the job market in the humanities, however, I think you need to have a gut sense that of the importance of your research work to your own self to get through a dissertation, with or without a baby. A baby just throws some of the questions into sharper relief. Proud to be Dr. Mama. Response 2: Congrats on both your ABD status and the new baby! Been there. I had my first after finishing qualifying exams, and thought I would easily be able to write my diss during his first yr since new babies sleep so much. Well, I didn't account for my own complete lack of interest in my research, or my inability to string together coherent thoughts in writing, or my son's complete lack of understanding that babies sleep all the time. :) With my committee's blessing, I put my diss aside for his first yr. It was the best decision I could have made. I didn't feel guilty about wanting to spend more time with my baby, or the pressures of writing. After his first bday, I slowly got back into it. He started preschool 3 days a wk when he was 18 mos, and I focused that time on my diss. It was a slow process, but I was determined to finish. One month before his third bday, and two months before the birth of his sister, I defended. My baby girl is 8 mos now, and I am SO glad I finished my PhD. I am in the social sciences, so very similar to the humanities. It is possible with the support of your committee and your family. When I was defending (VERY preg), I felt such pride for my accomplishment, and hope that I would be a strong role model for my baby daughter, and my older son. Response 3: I was about 50 pages from finishing my English Ph.D when my son was born 18 months ago. I was really naive about babies and thought I could finish writing during his naps. HAHAHAHA!! But I am really determined to finish the diss, however long it takes. It represents the last thing in the world that is mine alone, and the intellectual activity provides a necessary balance for the physical/emotional drain of parenting. I also think it's good for my son to know that his mom is smart and that she followed through and finished her degree. I put my work aside for over a year while I focused on the baby, but eventually decided I needed to commit some regular hours to my work. My son now stays with relatives for 3 hours a week, and a sitter for 6 hours a week, so I have 3 chunks of time to write. I leave the house with my laptop and don't allow myself to do any other errands or emails, etc. Continued on next pageâ€Ś 12 6
Sometimes I go to cafes at night while the baby is sleeping. Progress is slow but steady. The nice thing is, I have real perspective on my project now, and don't get all caught up in the details. By the time I am done, my son will probably be ready for preschool, and I might be able to teach part-time, or start looking for a new career. I'm certainly disenchanted with academia now that I see how incompatible it is with having kids. Sympathies and good luck!
and committee when I would finish. I think when your committee somehow imagines you finishing at a certain point they take you seriously and read your chapters and get back to you with comments in good time. I worked (sometimes only 15 min) on the diss EVERY day while my baby was napping. Writing gets harder as the baby gets older, so don't be too hard on yourself if you're struggling to balance playtime with work time. Be realistic and don't beat yourself up if you have a bad day. Just squeeze in 10 min before bed, even proofreading footnotes. If you know don't want to finish, withdraw right now. Having something you're not going to continue with hanging over your head is too much unnecessary stress when you've got a kid to take care of. Or, talk to your committee about withdrawing or about an extension. I hope this is helpful. Be kind to yourself and enjoy your baby while you can. They grow up fast, believe me! Good luck with whatever you decide!
Response 4: I'm a grad student in the social sciences with a new baby. I understand your feelings, although things may be easier for me since I spent a year doing all of my dissertation research pre-baby (though I still have the entire dissertation to write, the time I put in doing the research makes me want to finish no matter what, at least right now). Since I've spent several years in my program, I feel that I'll be better off in the long run if I write the dissertation and get my Ph.D., no matter what I decide to do with it...even if I work on it part-time so I can still have ample time with my baby. But right now I'm OK with the idea of trying to put my baby in day care 4 hours a day starting around 4 months, and trying to focus on getting some writing in then, for I think I'll still have plenty of time with the baby...and I've accepted the fact that it will take me a bit longer to finish than other childless grad students. I have also stopped trying to project ahead too much, for I also might be wanting a second child around the time I'd be going on the job market or starting a new job...I've just decided that I will write the diss and finish, and then take it from there and decide what to do. I empathize with your situation, but your decision to forge ahead with the diss or not is a very personal one. I know I would be upset with myself later in life if I did not get my Ph.D. and write about what I learned during my research. So my advice is to go with your gut and be honest with yourself about how much you care about finishing your program. Also a new mom and grad student!
Response 6: I'm a grad student in the social sciences with a new baby. I understand your feelings, although things may be easier for me since I spent a year doing all of my dissertation research pre-baby (though I still have the entire dissertation to write, the time I put in doing the research makes me want to finish no matter what, at least right now). Since I've spent several years in my program, I feel that I'll be better off in the long run if I write the dissertation and get my Ph.D., no matter what I decide to do with it...even if I work on it part-time so I can still have ample time with my baby. But right now I'm OK with the idea of trying to put my baby in day care 4 hours a day starting around 4 months, and trying to focus on getting some writing in then, for I think I'll still have plenty of time with the baby...and I've accepted the fact that it will take me a bit longer to finish than other childless grad students. I have also stopped trying to project ahead too much, for I also might be wanting a second child around the time I'd be going on the job market or starting a new job...I've just decided that I will write the diss and finish, and then take it from there and decide what to do. I empathize with your situation, but your decision to forge ahead with the diss or not is a very personal one. I know I would be upset with myself later in life if I did not get my Ph.D. and write about what I learned during my research. So my advice is to go with your gut and be honest with yourself about how much you care about finishing your program. Also a new mom and grad student!
Response 5: Hi, I just finished a dissertation and had a new baby during the last eight months of writing. So I can sympathize that writing a dissertation under these circumstances can be frustrating and difficult and just plain not what you're into right now. I set a rough and realistic deadline to finish. I repeatedly told my advisor
Reprinted with permission from The Berkeley Parentâ€™s Network. For the full article please visit http://parents.berkeley.edu/
Mother of 5 completes her PhD, finds a faculty position and finds success with her family Chrysalis L. Wright earned her B.S. in Psychology (2003) and her M.A. in Experimental Psychology (2006) from Middle Tennessee State University. She recently completed her Ph.D. in Life-span Developmental Psychology (2010) from Florida International University. Her dissertation research, Parental Absence and Academic Achievement in Immigrant Students, was awarded the Dissertation Year Fellowship Award from the University Graduate School at Florida International University. Dr. Wright’s research interests include romantic relationship formation behaviors, media influences on development, immigration, acculturation, and postmigration risks of immigrant students. Her work has been presented at numerous psychological conferences including the Association for Psychological Science and the Society for Research in Child Development. She is a wife and mother of 5 and has given presentations and written an article on how to balance graduate school and parenthood.
What was the most difficult thing about having children during graduate school? I think that the most difficult thing about having children during graduate school was being away from family. My husband and I moved away from my home state so that I could pursue a Doctorate degree. We had no family living in the area and could not rely on anyone other than ourselves to help with our children. It seems common for families to stay close to home so there are grandparents and aunts and uncles around to watch the children if need be or help out in other areas, but we did not have that. Another thing that was difficult was the economic sacrifices we made. We did not want to put our children in day care and had to make sure our schedules were flexible enough to allow one of us to be with the children at all times. My husband has goals that he wants to achieve as well but decided to postpone his plans until after I graduated. I graduated in the fall of 2010 and now it is my turn to show the same level of support to my husband as he did to me.
How many children did you have while in graduate school? Before entering graduate school to obtain a Master’s degree in Experimental Psychology, I already had two children; a boy, whom I was pregnant with when I graduated with my Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, and my daughter, who traveled with me on my journey to earn a college degree. When I graduated with my Masters degree in the summer of 2006 I was eight and a half months pregnant with my third child, a son. I was already accepted into the Doctoral program in Developmental Psychology at Florida International University and was originally supposed to begin in the fall of 2006 but decided to postpone my admittance until the spring of 2007 because my due date was so close to when the Doctoral program was to begin. I literally had my third child the same day I was supposed to start the Doctoral program at Florida International University. So, when I began the Doctoral program in the spring of 2007, I had three children. During my first year of the program I had my fourth child, another boy, during the fall semester of 2007. I had my fifth child, a girl, in the summer of 2009. In fact, I was seven months pregnant with her when I took my qualifying exam and eight months pregnant with her when I proposed my dissertation. I remember my major professor asking me if there was a deadline I was aiming for. My answer was yes, my due date!
Why was your husband’s support so important? My husband and I have done everything for the entire family as a group. Every decision that has been made, every sacrifice that we have endured has been done for the better of the family as a whole. We didn’t move to Florida so that I could earn a Doctorate degree. We moved to Florida so that we could have a better for life for our family. Instead of only focusing on the goals and accomplishments of one person, we have focused on the goals and accomplishments of the family as a group and me completing my Doctorate degree is only a part of this overall goal that my husband and I have for our family. It is a step in the process. I think that this mindset and lack of selfishness is why my husband has been so supportive of my education. Continued on next page… 14 6
What was the most rewarding thing about having your children during graduate school? I think that the most rewarding thing about having my children while in graduate school was that I actually did it. I think that in and of itself is the most rewarding part. By doing both at the same time I have learned a lot about myself that I did not know before and I have accomplished two goals at the same time; children and an education. When my oldest child turned one, I decided I should go to college. I realized how hard it was going to be to give my daughter everything she needed without a college education. Being a mother is what made me pursue a college education in the first place. My children have got to witness the journey first hand and now know what it takes to complete a college education. Aside from that, it is also rewarding to be the first person in my family to not only go to college, but to earn a Doctorate degree. And I did it with 5 children! It is a great feeling to know that I have changed my family tree in more than one way and to know that my decisions and my path in life have made a lasting impact on whatever family members come after me. Did you feel that you were supported as both a mom and student? While I was a student I felt supported, for the most part, by my family, friends, and faculty members at Florida International University. The most support I received came from my husband. I am the first person to go to college in my family and I know that my accomplishment has made my mother proud. My mother kept reminding me that I had to keep going; that I was almost there. Even so, there were members of my extended family that did not think my attending college with 5 children was a good idea or that I would actually graduate. I even had one family member tell me not to apply to Doctoral programs because this person thought I would never get accepted. Two of the most supportive family members I had were my paternal grandparents. Neither of them
ever hinted at doubting my ability to complete the program and be successful at it. Unfortunately, both passed away while I was in the Doctoral program and did not get to see me reach my goal. I did not handle the death of either of them well and wanted to quit the program. But my husband encouraged me to keep going and continuously provided support for me along the way. Any time I thought about quitting, there he was to push me to keep going until I graduated. How did other students respond to you? When I was working on my Masterâ€™s degree with two children other students responded pretty well to what I was doing. I associated with some of my classmates outside of class. I collaborated with other students on research projects and presentations. Some of us got together and helped each other with data analysis. We even applied to Doctoral programs together. When I started my Doctoral program, however, it was different. I never associated with any of the other students outside of class, work with other students on assignments, or collaborate with other students on research projects or presentations. When I was preparing for the qualifying exam, while the other students were studying in groups, I was doing it independently while pregnant with my fifth child; every morning at 5:00 a.m for 6 months. The other students would talk to me during class or while on campus but there did not appear to be a desire to associate outside of the University. Other students would ask how I went to graduate school with so many children. In response to these questions, I wrote an article that was published in the May edition of the APS Observer entitled The Master Jugglers: Ten Tips for Balancing Graduate School and Family Life and was invited to speak as a panelist for The Naked Truth II: Surviving Graduate School at the 2011 APS convention. I also spoke as a panelist for Baby Bump or Bump the Baby on the subject while a Doctoral candidate at Florida International University.
How do you think your professors and instructors responded to you? For the most part, my professors were very supportive. I only had one professor express the idea that I should not be in the program because of my family situation. Other than that, my professors were great! If something came up because of my children, my professors were understanding and worked with me. When I was serving as a teaching assistant in the psychology department, the professor I worked with called me the Angelina Jolie of graduate school because of my family situation. But the responsibilities of parenthood did not interfere with my performance as a teaching assistant. She liked my work so much that she for three semesters in a row! When I would bring my children with me to the University the professors we encountered treated my children with kindness, respect, and understanding. My professors would talk to my children and never treated them like they were in the way. My children were always made to feel welcome. Some professors played with them, some cuddled with the babies, and some would give my children treats for good behavior or goodies to take home. My oldest son visited my major professor so much that he now refers to her as the ―chocolate lady‖ because she always ended the visit by giving them a small piece of chocolate candy. While almost all of my professors were supportive, there are two professors that really stand out in the amount of support and encouragement they provided to me while I was in the program. These are Dr. Mary Levitt, professor and chairperson of the psychology department and Dr. Dionne Stephens, Assistant Professor in the psychology department. Now that I have graduated, these two professors remain supportive and serve as role models for me.
How have your children benefited from you being a student and a mom? I think that by my children watching me go through the process of earning a Doctorate degree that it has fostered a love for learning in them, especially in the two older children. My oldest daughter, who is now 12, says she wants to be a psychologist when she grows up and my oldest son is fascinated by dinosaurs. My children have learned that earning an education takes work, commitment, and determination. They have learned that people have to work for what they want and that nothing is free. They also understand that if they are curious about any subject, they can find the answers to their questions as long as they take it upon themselves to seek the answers. Also, since my children have experienced life before and after my degree they are able to see the difference in lifestyle that a college education can provide for them. They have seen the sacrifices my husband and I made for them. And they will obtain all of the benefits from it. What’s next for you? In the fall of 2011 I will be joining the psychology department at the University of Central Florida. UCF is the second largest University in the nation. I am extremely excited about the new position.. I will continue to be actively involved in research and my current interests focus on immigration issues, racial discrepancies, educational achievement and media influences on development. My goal is to get a tenure-track Assistant Professor position, and one day earn tenure, where I can devote a significant amount of time to my research and educating graduate students in Developmental Psychology. I would also like to devote a significant amount of effort in encouraging other women to pursue a college education after having children. I think women limit themselves by thinking that they cannot do both at the same time. As far as the future of my family, I am not opposed to the idea of having more children. I think that my children are an accomplishment in itself and want to give them everything that they need. I want their childhood to be full of happy memories and I want their futures to be bright. Right now our family feels content with 5 children; three boys ages 7, 4, and 3 years; and two girls ages 12 and 2 years. But who knows what the future holds!
What was the key to keeping sane and juggling so many responsibilities? I never felt that I was at risk of going ―crazy‖ when I was a graduate student and a mother of 5 small children. I think that there is a misconception about having children that women have today. Most women feel that they have to wait to have children; that they can’t be mothers and be a college student or have a career at the same time. Some women choose not to have children all together. I think that this notion is the opposite of what women should be trying to achieve. Children shouldn’t be considered a burden but should be considered a reward. I’m not saying that it is easy or that it is for everyone, but it is doable and is a very fulfilling experience. But I don’t want it to sound like I did it by myself because I didn’t. My husband was very supportive. In fact, it was his idea for me to pursue the degree in the first place. If I had to do it by myself, I wouldn’t have been able to complete the program.
Calls for Papers, Announcements & Fellowships APA Dissertation Research Award The Science Directorate of the American Psychological Association sponsors an annual competition for dissertation research funding. The purpose of the Dissertation Research Award program is to assist science-oriented doctoral students of psychology with research costs. The current program includes 30-40 grants of $1000 each, along with several larger grants of up to $5000 to students whose dissertation research reflects excellence in scientific psychology. Applicants must be graduate students of psychology in good standing with their university, at a regionally accredited university or college located in the United States or Canada. Applicants must be enrolled full-time or working on their dissertation research for an equivalent of full-time enrollment regardless of actual registration status. Applicants must be student affiliates or associate members of the American Psychological Association. Students who are not affiliates must apply for affiliation when submitting materials for the Dissertation Research Award . Deadline: September 15, 2011 Website: http://www.apa.org/about/awards/scidir-dissertre.aspx
Janet Hyde Graduate Student Research Grant These grants, each up to $500, are awarded to doctoral psychology students to support feminist research on the psychology of women and gender. The grants are made possible through the generosity of Janet Shibley Hyde, PhD, who donates the royalties from her book, Half the Human Experience, to this fund. Past recipients of Hyde Graduate Student Research Grants are not eligible to apply. Because the purpose of this award is to facilitate research that otherwise might not be possible, projects that are beyond the data analysis stage are not eligible. A panel of psychologists will evaluate the proposals for theoretical and methodological soundness, relevance to feminist goals, applicant's training and qualifications to conduct the research, and feasibility of completing the project. Deadline: September 15, 2011 Website: http://www.apa.org/about/awards/scidir-dissertre.aspx
The Second National Conference on African/Black Psychology The Second National Conference on African/Black Psychology is dedicated to the lifeâ€™s work of Amos Wilson. Amos Wilson was a scholar/activist who heeded the call of Bolekaja, which means to come on down and fight. Given his unwavering commitment and dedication to a psychology of liberation for African people, Wilson centered his focus on psycho-historical and social analysis that sought to not only interpret and understand Africana realities under Western oppression, but to ultimately change them. Thus, in the spirit of Amos Wilson, this conference will attempt to challenge scholars to continue the task of offering models of psychological functioning that demonstrate how the acquiring of cultural consciousness translates into practical solutions that impact the social, economic and political conditions confronting people of African descent. CFP Deadline: August 15, 2011 When: October 14, 2011 Where: Florida A & M University, Tallahasee, Florida Contact Email: email@example.com
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AACR Conference on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic Minorities and the Medically Underserved. The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) is pleased to announce the fourth in this series of conferences addressing new research in cancer health disparities. The program will feature all levels of basic, population, clinical, and transdisciplinary research related to cancer. The goals of this conference are to bring together physicians, scientists, health professionals, and health care leaders working in a variety of disciplines to discuss the latest findings in their fields, to foster collaborative interdisciplinary interactions and partnerships, and to stimulate the development of new research in cancer health disparities. Abstract Submission and Award Application Deadline: August 11 Advance Registration Deadline: August 11 Advanced PsycINFO Training on APA PsycNET. The American Psychological Association is pleased to invite you to attend a PsycINFO Webinar. This 1-hour Advanced Training session will detail the coverage and selection practices, the structure of database records, and annual reloads. The session reviews the structure of PsycINFO records, covering the elements of the bibliographic citation, controlled vocabulary and indexing, and valueadded fields, such as author affiliation, grant/sponsorship, and tests and measures. Sample searches will demonstrate searching using the online thesaurus, author and journal indexes, natural language or keywords, and fields and limits. When: Thursday, August 11, 2011 Where: APA Building, 750 First Street, NE, Washington, DC Time: 2:00 p.m-4:00 p.m.
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The 2011 Caribbean Psychology Conference (CRCP2011) CRCP2011 is hosted by the Bahamas Psychological Association (BPA), under the auspices of the International Union of Psychological Science (IUPsyS), the International Association of Applied Psychology (IAAP) and the International Association for Cross Cultural Psychology (IACCP). Join psychology researchers, practitioners, educators, and students in a four-day scientific conference to: Promote the growth of psychology in the Caribbean Strengthen regional bonds and national organizations Support Caribbean psychology’s increased engagement with the global psychological community When: Thursday, November 15- 18, 2011 Where: Wyndham Nassau Resort, Bahamas Early Bird Registration Deadline: July 15, 2011 Website: www.caribbeanpsychology.org
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The Psychology of Black Women Section One of the Society for the Psychology of Women Who we are: The Psychology of Black Women, Section One of Division 35, began as a committee on Black women's concerns. With vision and perseverance, the committee gained a more prominent voice within the Division and Section One, The Psychology of Black Women, was established in 1984. As a section, The Psychology of Black Women has its own bylaws and governance structure and has scheduled time for invited presentations at the American Psychological Association's annual convention.
The Visions of Section One are: a. To create a forum where Black women can network and get mentoring and support from each other b. To promote the development of methods of research and models of treatment and intervention that are ethnically, culturally, and gender appropriate for Black women c. To increase scientific understanding of those aspects of ethnicity, culture, and class among Black women which pertain to the psychology of women d. To maintain and increase the overall status of Black women in the profession of Psychology e. To increase the quality of education and training opportunities for Black women in Psychology f. To encourage the evolution and development of the specialty of the Psychology of Black Women as a science g. To advocate on behalf of Black women psychologists with respect to the formation of policies of Division 35 h. To promote the general objectives of APA and Division 35
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This is the Summer 2010 Newsletter for the Psychology of Black Women (Section 1 of Division 35: Society for the Psychology of Women in the A...