Women's Leadership Program
Date: May 23, 2001
Celebrates Promotions, Successes
By: Marianne Kunnen-Jones
Phone: (513) 556-1826
Archive: Campus News
Women who have participated in UC's Women's Leadership Program and members of the President's Cabinet gathered at the Faculty Club Monday evening to celebrate the fact that in two years, five of the program's interns have received offers of promotions. The celebrants also received some encouragement from a woman who has served as president at three different universities.
The Women's Leadership Program, launched in November 1999, offers two programs designed to help UC women faculty and administrators reach the top ranks. One program is a series of six workshops focused on leadership, professional development and issues in higher education. So far, 42 women have completed the workshops. The second part of the program features administrative internships for selected women with paid release time. Nine UC women have had internships.
Of those nine, five have been offered promotions, with four of them signed and delivered. These include Regina Sapona, associate dean in the College of Education, Gigi Escoe, interim associate dean in Arts and Sciences, Jean Neils-Strunjas, interim associate dean in Allied Health Sciences, and Melody Clark, academic director of the Office of Distance Education in the College of Evening and Continuing Education. Dorothy Air has been offered the position as assistant senior vice president in the East Campus provost's office, but the paperwork is still pending.
The keynote speaker for the evening, Judith Sturnick, president of the Union Institute, stressed that even 30 years after the gender equity laws of Title 9 were passed, there is still "a tremendous need" for activities like UC's Women's Leadership Program. She urged the organizers to take the program to other colleges and universities in the Tristate to widen its impact.
While she served as the vice president of the Office of Women in Higher Education at the American Council of Education in Washington, D.C., Sturnick was involved in a study of women presidents in higher education. The study included 15 roundtables with women presidents and seven with male presidents and found that both the women and the men agreed that women are still being discriminated against when it comes to leadership positions in the academic world.
Only about 20 percent of university presidents are women, and most are at two-year colleges and less prestigious institutions, Sturnick said, adding that university boards of trustees still see women presidents as "the other."
She urged higher education to start putting the "new faces" of women and minorities in the president's seat. "We need new blood in leadership," she said. "We are recycling the same old leadership...We've got to start thinking in fresh new ways and it's not going to happen until we start seeing some new faces."
This year's Women's Leadership Program participants are:
Ann Marie Borys