Bailey, M., Marchetti, C., DeBartolo, E., Mozrall, J., Williams, G., Baum, S., & LaLonde, S. (2011). Establishing the foundation for future organizational reform and transformation at a large private university to expand the representation of women faculty. Proceedings of the 2011 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition, Washington, DC.
- This paper described the ADVANCE IT-Catalyst study that examined the barriers facing female STEM faculty members at six Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) colleges, compared with men at RIT and women at similar universities. The research examined faculty rank, tenure, career track, leadership opportunities, and salary, and aimed to inform RIT’s efforts to recruit, retain, and advance female STEM faculty.
- The authors used institutional records from 2004 to 2010 to measure trends in recruitment, retention, advancement, and compensation, by faculty gender. A career-life survey administered to gather information on STEM faculty’s teaching and research experiences, including career satisfaction and work-life balance, complemented the institutional data. The authors tested for statistically significant differences in responses between men and women. Finally, the study benchmarked university policies and survey results against policies and survey results at other similar universities.
- In terms of retention, the study found that female faculty hired from 2002 to 2009 were twice as likely to have left RIT by 2010 than male faculty and, overall, the institution had a significantly lower percentage of female science and engineering tenured and tenure-track faculty in 2010 than the national average.
- In terms of leadership advancement and salary, the percentage of STEM leadership positions held by women in 2010 was proportional to the percentage of STEM faculty who were women. The study found that salary adjustments made by the university during the study period reduced the salary gap for female assistant and associate professors, but actually increased the gap for full professors. In the survey, women reported having to exert more effort and make more personal sacrifices to advance their careers than men, though most women felt that the tenure process was fair. Finally, the benchmarking study of policies and benefits found that RIT lagged behind other universities in terms of tenure clock extension, mentoring, and maternity leave.