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2007 Meeting Minutes

November 14, 2007

Minutes taken by Larry Pratt

Present: Tina Betti, Susan Stasiowski, Heidi Sosik, Dave Sutherland, Deb Shafer, Peter Mollo, Joan Watring, Ann Sweck, Liz Kujawinski, and Mike Purcell.

1) (Membership) We need to replace a few outgoing members, including Liz and Mike. Any suggestions?

2) (Chilly climate workshops). Heidi is trying to schedule a Dr. Bernice Sandler chilly climate workshop for early December. The workshop is aimed at new employees and others who have not yet attended one. We asked for feedback on past workshops and did not get much.

3) (Visiting scholars). We talked about the possibility of inviting Jane Elliott, either as a speaker or to give a workshop. She is very $$$. Might want to do this jointly with Diversity Committee since Elliot’s expertise are generally in the area race, class, etc. in addition to gender.

4) (Space) Larry handed out the results of his 2006 Space Survey (see these on Activities page). There does not seem to be any obvious discrepancy between space allocation men vs. women, but the statistics are difficult due to small numbers. There was a feeling that the senior research personal should also be included in the reporting.

As far as periodic reporting of these numbers (by the department execs) the example that Larry handed out seemed like an acceptable format. It is roughly as follows:

Space Allocation

male female
office lab total office lab total
Assistant Scientists
John Doe 157 200 357
Jane Doe 170 174 344
standard deviation 50
Associate Scientists w/o tenure
Larry Pratt 150 0 150
Laurie Pratt 170 200 370
standard deviation 46
Associate Scientists w tenure

5) (On-site daycare) Tina: A company named Bright Horizons sets up daycare. They have met with the Vice Presidents and have come up with a WHOI plan with 56 slots, including a certain number of toddlers, infants, etc.Would run 10.5 hrs/day. The cost is apparently 1.5 million to get it going. Tuition costs could be higher than local (about $300/week vs. $235/week for toddler), but they claim to have better teachers and facilities. On top of this there is an institutional cost of $100K/year to $300K/year, depending on the tuition rate. They also run daycare at LDEO and (we think) MIT. Tina has been asked by the VPs to do a survey to find out who will actually use this.

Dave Sutherland commented that Joint Program students with kids can only get daycare at MIT and therefore must reside there. There is one at the Stata Center. He is going to find out how much this costs.

Heidi asks whether WHOI coordinate a new daycare building with new housing to replace Winding Lane (which may be sold)?

There is a suggestion that GEPAC should sponsor an opening meeting to discuss these issues? For example, how will people feel about an outside company as opposed to established local organizations such as the Woods Hole CO-OP. Tina will check with the VP’s about the open meeting suggestion.

6) (Supervisors manual) Tina: HR plans a series of workshops on training people (supervisors, search committees, etc.) on how to conduct interviews. They also have a short manual called “The Interview Process”.With Deb’s help, they are revising the HR website to present this information in a better way.

June 19, 2007

In Attendance: Heidi Sosik, Tim Eglinton, David Sutherland, Tina Betti, Larry Pratt, Christine Charette, Debbie Shafer, Liz Kujawinski, Andone Lavery, Joan Watring, Alex Rao

Updates and Actions:

A). The Science article “U.S. Agencies Quiz Universities on the Status of Women in Science” was distributed (March 30, Vol 315).

B). Tim and Heidi met with all of the VPs and with Emily Schorer and Tina Betti to discuss a variety of gender equity-related topics that were raised in Beyond Bias and Barriers by the National Academies of Sciences.

  1. They would like WHOI to monitor the tangibles and statistics on women at WHOI, specifically those on the science staff.Larry Madin is working on putting the statistics together and will provide the numbers to GEPAC when assembled.
  2. They discussed instituting a new benefit for travel-related costs to apply to dependent-related expenses. An example of this is when a scientist goes to a meeting and is in need of child/elder care while at the meeting.
  3. They discussed the possibility of on-site daycare at WHOI which could include summer programs/camps for post-toddler kids.
  4. They discussed the need for training supervisors to recognize biases at work, during the interview process etc. The idea of hiring an outside service to train WHOI supervisors was mentioned.

Heidi and Tim asked the VPs to take all of the National Academies’ findings at face value and to use them as a guideline for WHOI policies and practices.

C). Tim Eglinton will be stepping down as Co-Chair of this committee to be the Department Chairperson of the Department of Marine Chemistry & Geochemistry.

D). Our next meeting will be in late summer/early fall, 2007. Items to be addressed include:

  1.   Space allocation update from Larry Pratt
  2.   The interview process and possible biases that exist during the interview process:
  1. review the HR document “Supervisor’s Guide to the Interview Process” (Tina, Joan, Liz and Debbie to make recommendations for changes to this document at our next meeting)
  2. should Dept. Chairs guide departments to ask certain questions (ie. the same questions) to each candidate
  3. educating the departments about how to interview candidates and what to ask/not to ask a candidate