All Posts Tagged With: "women"
What students are talking about today (April 1st)
1. In a letter to the editor of a campus newspaper, a Princeton University alumna whose sons now attend the Ivy Leage school, has told female students, “forget about having it all, or not having it all, leaning in or leaning out. Here’s what nobody is telling you: Find a husband on campus before you graduate.” Susan A. Patton says that Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg’s suggestion that women “lean in” to advance in their careers is missing the point. Here’s a sample of the controversial letter from the Daily Princetonian:
I am the mother of two sons who are both Princetonians. My older son had the good judgment and great fortune to marry a classmate of his, but he could have married anyone. My younger son is a junior and the universe of women he can marry is limitless. Men regularly marry women who are younger, less intelligent, less educated. It’s amazing how forgiving men can be about a woman’s lack of erudition, if she is exceptionally pretty. Smart women can’t (shouldn’t) marry men who aren’t at least their intellectual equal. As Princeton women, we have almost priced ourselves out of the market. Simply put, there is a very limited population of men who are as smart or smarter than we are. And I say again — you will never again be surrounded by this concentration of men who are worthy of you.
You can imagine the reaction this caused over the weekend. “What an excruciatingly retro understanding of relationships she has,” wrote Susan O’Connor of Nymag.com, to which Patton responded in The Huffington Post, “honestly, it was intended as little more than honest advice from a Jewish mother.” It’s rare that such views make it into print, so I’m certain we’ll hear more on this.
Prof. Pettigrew: Children are a choice after all.
As a progressive man, I see the value in diversity in the academic workforce. I also understand that reasonable employers should take reasonable steps to accommodate the particular needs of those employees. And sometimes that means taking a person’s family situation into account. But more and more, women in academia have lost sight of what’s reasonable when it comes to those kinds of allowances.
A recent article in University Affairs, for instance, reports on a study by Shelley Adamo who argues that women are underrepresented as biologists because they tend to be seeking jobs when they “are in their late 20s and early 30s and more likely to have a partner and young children. ‘That sort of handicaps them,’” according to Dr. Adamo.
Campuses divided on best approach
Up to one in four female students is sexually assaulted during university, according to the University of Alberta Health Centre. While there’s wide support for fighting gender-based violence, campuses are divided over who should provide the support and who should pay for it.
Some university clinicians want help to come from professionals in campus clinics, while some students want universities to also pay for peer-based support networks run by students. Meanwhile, some student unions, funded by mandatory fees, have taken up the prevention and support role at some schools.
The debate is playing out at Concordia University where a group called the 2110 Centre for Gender Advocacy (named after their main location at 2110 de Maisonneuve Blvd.) argues the university should provide funding for a student-run sexual assault centre to complement its health and counseling services. Bianca Mugyenyi, the 2110′s campaign coordinator, says that peer-based support is a model that’s worked well across Canada.
Women banned, Niki Minaj, “oversharing” and Jack Layton
1. Iran has banned women, who make up 60 per cent of its university students, from 77 subjects including accounting, engineering and pure chemistry. At the University of Tehran, forestry and mathematics are off limits too. Last year, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad considered segregating men and women entirely on campuses. Could this new ban be punishment for all the women who protested his apparent election fraud in 2009?
2. An Oklahoma high school valedictorian was denied her diploma because she said the word “hell” during her commencement speech and then refused to apologize. Kaitlin Nootbaar quoted a commencement speech from the Twilight series film Eclipse. “I quoted, ‘They ask us now what we want be and we say who the hell knows,’” she told The Toronto Star. She meant to say “heck.”
Scaachi Koul: it’s more depressing to hear this girl complain
When I graduated last month, everyone told me that it was the beginning of the rest of my life. This, they told me, was when it would all start becoming really difficult, and it would show what I was made of. I would come into my own.
But why didn’t anyone tell me I wouldn’t get everything I waaaaaaaaaaant?
Taylor Cotter, a 22-year-old American writer and editor, already has a job, an apartment, a 401k and financial autonomy from her parents. But she’s sad. She’s sad because things are working out for her. Cotter, you see, never had to struggle for her success the way others have had to. From her blog post on The Huffington Post:
Female butchers are still rare
With displays filled with duck confit, wild boar and dry-aged beef, Olliffe is one of Toronto’s most drool-worthy butcher shops. The head butcher is usually behind the counter, fearlessly sharpening knives without looking and effortlessly trimming perfectly symmetrical steaks.
Erica Jamieson isn’t just Olliffe’s head butcher, she’s also the only female employee. At 27, she co-manages a staff of 12 men, some of whom have been butchering for nearly as long as she’s been alive. “When people enter a butcher shop, they expect to see the big European man with the cleaver and hairy arms,” she says. “I kind of fell into it.”
Communist League weighs in
The planned men’s centre at Simon Fraser University has a new critic. The Young Communist League of Canada told Nexus student newspaper at Camosun College that while women need a centre on campus because of “systemic barriers,” men should not have their own space.
Jeff McCann, university relations officer of the Simon Fraser Student Society, disagrees: “That attitude is part of the problem in society. I believe that this place should exist, and that it is nobody’s right to deny men of a service that many experts and students believe to be a valuable idea.”
Seed money for a man-only space was included in the April budget of the SFSS. To read Maclean’s columnist Emma Teitel’s take on the fervent opposition to the funding, click here.
Brigette DePape on the Power of Youth
Brigette DePape was a uniformed Senate page when she made herself an instant symbol of youth protest nearly a year ago by silently holding a handmade “Stop Harper” sign on the floor of the upper chamber during the reading of the Conservative government’s Throne Speech. Since then, she’s been travelling the country meeting with activist groups, and this week the 22-year-old launches Power of Youth, a collection of essays she co-edited on activism.
Q: You went from unknown to icon awfully quickly. Did you ever ﬁnd the transition intimidating?
A: To be honest, I was really scared when I took the action. The hardest part was that moment of, “Should I do this?” I could either stand back and watch as the government was eroding our social services and destroying our environment or I could do something. I was scared about my parents’ reaction, my family’s reaction. But then I really thought about the people who are impacted by Harper—women, indigenous people and workers. That really gave me strength and the feeling that I’m part of something bigger.
Q: How did your parents react?
A: My dad was really critical of the action. My parents want what’s best for me and all that, and I respect that. So they were concerned—“How are you going to pay the rent?” and that kind of thing. But then there was a real sense from my sisters that they were proud of me. I do feel a lot of support from my family. That’s huge and really important to me. To be honest, I think my dad is coming around.
Simon Fraser students debate gender-exclusive spaces
Keenan Midgley played basketball, soccer, baseball and football. But it isn’t his athletic skill that has made him well-known on campus in Burnaby, B.C. It’s the budget he’s written as treasurer of the Simon Fraser Student Society.
The fifth-year accounting student added funding that will carve out a special space on campus for guys. The men’s centre, assuming the budget passes a final vote, will get $30,000 next year. That’s the same amount that the women’s centre, started in 1974, will receive.
The pending creation of the men-only space is the source of much discussion at Simon Fraser University. Since the news broke in April, many students have questioned whether the men deserve funding. Along with that, a debate has emerged over whether women—who make up 55 per cent of undergraduate students at SFU—still need their own women-only space.
But perhaps not the way you’d expect
By 1991, women surpassed men to make up the majority of graduating classes in Canada. By 2006, they earned roughly 60 per cent of degrees, reported Statistics Canada.
The shift inspired questions (hand wringing, really) about whether educated women will choose careers over marriage, leading to the smaller families and the end of civilization as we know it.
Well, women can now relax—depending on where they live. Taken together, two new studies suggest that education is related to marriage rates, but differently than you may currently believe.
Regina prof’s revelation highlights students in the sex trade
A University of Regina professor who worked as an escort when she was a master’s student many years ago has shared her story with CBC News.
Jean Hillabold, now an English instructor, says she’s speaking out because she wants to draw attention to the debate over sex trade regulation.
But in doing so, she’s also highlighted the fact that some students and university graduates work in prostitution, erotic dancing and pornography to pay their bills.
Now: Gender Studies
Memorial University’s Department of Women’s Studies will officially become the Department of Gender Studies on Aug. 31. Katherine Side, the department head, told today.mun.ca that the name change, which has been discussed since 2005, better reflects the diverse work the department already does. “We are pleased to join 28 other Canadian universities that include gender in one form or another in their undergraduate and graduate degree program titles,” she added.
University strikes task force after second alleged assault
Boston University has created a task force to study the “culture and climate” of its men’s hockey team after a second player was arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting a female student.
Max Nicastro, 21, a BU Terriers defenceman and Detroit Red Wings draft pick, was charged on Feb. 19 with two counts of rape.
That came after the Dec. 11 arrest of former teammate and Toronto-bred centre Corey Trivino, 21, who allegedly forced his way into a student’s room and groped her against her will. Trivino has pleaded not guilty.
BU president Robert A. Brown said in a statement Thursday that the task force reflects “a University-level judgment that the two incidents indicate something systemic or habitual may foster a team climate that does not comport with the highest standards of conduct we seek to maintain…”
Follows years of student lobbying
After years of lobbying from students, Carleton University has announced that the school will open a support centre for victims of sexual assault. Advocates began pushing for a crisis support centre in 2007 after an attack in a school lab. But the university resisted the creation of a separate centre, arguing it offered sufficient support through counselling and medical services.
Then, at least three sexual assaults on women were reported on campus last fall, raising the volume on the demands emanating from the Coalition for a Carleton Sexual Assault Support Centre, a group of volunteers who run an unofficial victims’ campus hotline from eight a.m. to midnight.
Linda Capperauld, director of equity services for Carleton, told the Ottawa Citizen Tuesday that the administration will run the new centre in Robertson Hall. It may open as early as September.
“Numerous” sightings of flasher
The RCMP at the University of British Columbia are warning the public, particularly women, to be avoid jogging, walking or biking alone on or near the trails of Pacific Spirit Park near West 16th Avenue. Here’s why: ”On numerous occasions, women on the trails have complained of a male approaching them by exposing his genital area and masturbating as they went by. The male is described as Caucasian with a slim build and very tanned. He is believed to be approximately 5’7″ to 5’9″ and between the ages of 30 to 40 years old.”
A coast-to-coast round-up of remembrance
On this date in 1989, a young man named Marc Lepine rounded up women at the Ecole Polytechnique engineering school in Montreal and opened fire, killing 14 females and injuring 14 others before turning the gun on himself. In his suicide note, he blamed women for his problems.
Since 1991, Dec. 6 has been The National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. Across Quebec today, survivors of the shooting will gather with activists and ask the Quebec government to sue the Canadian government over Bill C-19, which will abolish the long-gun registry and—they say— allow more violence against women to occur.
Here are a few of the ways universities across the country are marking the sombre occasion.
Cause of death T.B.D.
A Bangladeshi newspaper reports that Hassan Syed, the who man allegedly beat, bit and blinded his wife, University of British Columbia (UBC) master’s student Rumana Manzur, has died. Golam Haider, deputy inspector general of prisons, told bdnews24.com that Syed had been brought to a hospital prison cell Nov. 23 because he was mentally unstable. He then suffered cardiac failure on Dec. 5. Asked about suicide as a potential cause, Haider said that an autopsy has not yet been completed. Manzur’s aunt told The Toronto Star that her niece is aware of the death, but unable to speak publicly about it. The UBC community reacted to the news of Manzur’s June attack by raising $58,000 in the first month after it, which helped bring the victim and her child to Vancouver. Surgeries in Canada to restore her sight were unsuccessful, but the fundraising hasn’t stopped. UBC’s Muslim Students’ Association raised a further $6,000 for Manzur at an Iftar during Ramadan.
Minister cites recent sexual assaults
The federal government is planning to fund projects to address violence against women on university and college campuses.
Rona Ambrose, Minister for Status of Women, told the Canadian Press that recent attacks on Canadian campuses are a reality check.
“Yes, there are good programs out there being offered by institutions like universities and colleges but we need to do more,” she said.
Women have been targeted by sexual predators at schools across the country this year. On the weekend, there were two incidents of possible sexual predators near the University of Windsor. Earlier this month, female students near Vancouver Island University in Nanaimo, B.C. allege they received the date-rape drug GHB. In the spring, York University experienced two alleged sexual assaults and the murder of Qian Liu, a student from China. In April, four female McGill University students were physically assaulted.
Student reports man with his pants down
Police at the University of Windsor have posted notices on campus after two women reported encountering possible sexual predators this weekend. A woman reported she was followed home early Saturday morning on Sunset Avenue. The man who allegedly followed her is described as skinny, Hispanic and 21-years-old. The second woman reported that in the early hours of Sunday morning she saw a man with his pants down who was watching her through a window at Canterbury College. He is described as in his 30s or 40s with facial hair, according to CBC News.
The perils of co-ed washrooms
From the 21st Maclean’s University Rankings. Get your copy today!
Some call it “the can,” others, the final frontier of gender equality: It’s the public washroom and it’s gone co-ed. Even though single-sex facilities are still the norm on the majority of Canadian university campuses, you’d be hard-pressed to find a school that doesn’t have at least one co-ed washroom—and it usually includes shower stalls. McGill, York University, the University of Toronto, Dalhousie, Mount Allison and the University of British Columbia are just a few of the “progressive” (or backwards, depending on your lavatorial leanings) co-ed washroom providers, earning the approval of campus feminists who view mixed facilities as a positive step towards full gender equality. Others, however, are not convinced. One 18-year-old Queen’s University psychology major says she was relieved to live in an all-girls dormitory solely because of the same- sex bathroom factor. Co-ed washrooms struck her as “grosser because boys used them,” says Jessica, now in her second year and living off-campus with a washroom of her own. “The girls’ ones were generally very clean.” Jessica would regularly make the five-minute walk back to her all-girls dorm from the co-ed dorm where many of her girlfriends lived, simply to avoid using the washrooms there. “It just smelled so much worse,” she says, before conceding, “maybe I just have bathroom phobia.”