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"level playfields"

nishir at ohsu.edu nishir at ohsu.edu
Thu Aug 5 18:49:21 EST 1993

In article <9308050335.AA17349 at east.gsfc.nasa.gov> igo at biovx2.DNET.NASA.GOV
>I am a new graduate student, just finishing my first year.  I find the
>idea of basing things such as admission to grad school, (or getting a
>job, or giving a talk at an important meeting) mainly on gender (or on
>race or on anything else *unrelated* to what should be relevant factors)
>kind of appalling.  If I found out tomorrow that my GENDER was a *major*
>consideration in the decision to accept me to grad school, with factors
>such as research experience, grades in college and other *related* 
>factors being secondary to my gender, I would have a very difficult
>decision.  I would think seriously about quitting grad school now.
><other stuff edited out>

>Megan Igo
Yes, it's disheartening to know you were chosen just because of your gender,
but I take the attitude that it's my duty to *enlighten* people with the idea
that a competent scientist can be either gender.  Just about every university
committee and research review group that I have been invited to be one has been
because of my gender.  In fact, I have had NIH executives tell me outright that
they are asking me to be on this site visit or that ad hoc because I am a
woman.  I am on the promotion and tenure committee because "they" wanted to
replace a woman with a woman.  But if I took offense at all these things, I
would have quit my position many many times.  I figure it's OK in this day and
age to be in as a token woman.  Just think of it as an opportunity to educate
people.  When the numbers become more equal, then this nonsense will stop.  But
it is nice to have more "equal" representation.  Just hang in there and fight
and know you have worked as hard as possible for your goals.

Rae Nishi
Assoc Prof
Cell Biol & Anat

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