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Sexual and Gender Diversity at 2012 AAPT/APS Physics Department Chairs conference

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Presentation on LGBT issues, and sexual and gender diversity to 110 physics department chairs.

Presentation on LGBT issues, and sexual and gender diversity to 110 physics department chairs.

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  • 1. Sexual and Gender Diversity Wouter Deconinck 2012 Physics Department Chairs Conference “Developing an Inclusive Diversity Climate”LGBT+ Physicist WG: T. Atherton, R. Barthelemy, E. Long, M. Ramsey-Musolf, E. Simmons,...
  • 2. Sexual and Gender Identity ● Gender (≠ biological sex at birth): result of socially constructed ideas of how a particular sex acts ● Sexual orientation: pattern of attraction to a gender – Lesbian, gay, bisexual, asexual ● Gender identity: gender a person identifies as – Male, female, transgender (trans male, trans female) ● Gender expression – How one chooses to act, independent of sex at birth ● Identity politics – varying interpretations of different categories (e.g. queer)2012 Physics Department Chairs Conference Sexual and Gender Diversity (W. Deconinck) 2
  • 3. Campus Climate and Diversity ● Hurtado and Milem, Chang, Antonio: campus climate in dimensions of historical legacy, structural diversity, organizational, psychological, and behavioral climate – initially applied to ethnic/racial diversity ● Effects of campus climate on success: research shows – campus environment perceived as hostile → higher attrition (Hurtado & Ponjuan, Guiffrida et al.) – inclusive campus environments → students feel better equipped for multicultural society (Gurin et al.) – healthy campus climate → democratic skills and positive learning (Hurtado & Ponjuan) – gender discrimination → negative impact for women faculty (Settles, Cortina, Malley, Stewart)2012 Physics Department Chairs Conference Sexual and Gender Diversity (W. Deconinck) 3
  • 4. Why Should You Care? ● Students: acceptance by peers and department, safety, substance abuse, name on degree, identity development, education, ... → student recruiting, performance, retention! ● Faculty: productivity, sense of community, partner benefits, dual-career issues, recognition of international marriage and partner visas, … → faculty recruiting, performance, retention! ● Intersectionality: many people in multiple minorities (gender, orientation, ethnicity, disability,...)2012 Physics Department Chairs Conference Sexual and Gender Diversity (W. Deconinck) 4
  • 5. Why Is This Timely? ● “2010 State of Higher ● Exclusionary behavior Ed for LGBT People” experienced, by source: ● Survey of 279 faculty in – 70% administrator several academic areas – 30% students ● Experiences of LGB ● Exclusionary behavior faculty in STEM fields: experienced, by cause: – 47% observed – 80% sexual identity exclusionary behavior – 30% gender expression – 21% experienced – 30% gender exclusionary behavior – 53% considered leavingReference: Rankin S., et al. (2010). Charlotte, NC: Campus Pride.2012 Physics Department Chairs Conference Sexual and Gender Diversity (W. Deconinck) 5
  • 6. APS March 2012: Sexual Diversity ● “First-ever session on sexual and gender diversity at a major physics conference.” (APS News, April 2012) ● Six invited speakers and lively panel discussion ● Over 120 attendees throughout the session: – 49% sexual/gender minority, 47% non-minority – 60% students, 40% post-graduate (19% faculty) – “I think showing successful academics who are out is an important way to dispel the notion that being out precludes or limits one’s professional opportunities.” ● Need for data, for role models, and for awareness ● Strong support from APS for diversity and inclusivenessReference: Ackerman N. et al, in preparation.2012 Physics Department Chairs Conference Sexual and Gender Diversity (W. Deconinck) 6
  • 7. What Can You Do About It Today? ● In your department: – Use gender neutral and inclusive language (“partner” instead of “wife”) in department communications – Invite LGBT speakers to present colloquia – Include LGBT faculty on departmental committees to offer experiences and solutions (but avoid tokenism) ● At your institution: – Participate in surveys that query LGBT demographics (e.g. CampusPride climate index) – Include protections for “sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression” in EEO policies ● More actions in the handouts!2012 Physics Department Chairs Conference Sexual and Gender Diversity (W. Deconinck) 7
  • 8. Further Resources ● LGBT+Physicists – http://lgbtphysicists.x10hosting.com ● CampusPride Climate Index – http://campusclimateindex.org ● “2010 State of Higher Education for LGBT People” – http://campuspride.org/research ● Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network – http://www.glsen.org ● Out in STEM (oSTEM) – http://www.ostem.org2012 Physics Department Chairs Conference Sexual and Gender Diversity (W. Deconinck) 8
  • 9. Additional Slides2012 Physics Department Chairs Conference Sexual and Gender Diversity (W. Deconinck) 9
  • 10. How Would You React? ● An undergraduate student in your program comes out as transgender and asks you, the chair, about resources and about the atmosphere in the department. ● A lesbian faculty candidate asks you about health benefits for her partner when you offer her a tenure track position.2012 Physics Department Chairs Conference Sexual and Gender Diversity (W. Deconinck) 10