Gender Equality: Report and Survey on Faculty Life at UCSF
A possible model for MSSM?

The attached report (Faculty life UCSF) is a very thoughtful analysis of faculty issues at a first rate academic institution, UCSF. The report is based upon a survey commissioned by UCSF Chancellor Michael Bishop and performed by Belden Russonello & Stewart (BRS), a Washington, D.C.-based opinion research firm. They conclude that the climate and the reality in which women and men believe they work at UCSF are often worlds apart. Still the University is a place where the work is highly satisfying and its faculty wants to be and remain. Women and men faculty members believe that the University's attractiveness to women can be enhanced with steps to assure their full participation and address their professional and personal needs.

The survey is a central part of a study to describe the professional climate for women faculty at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). It helps identify attitudes and experiences of women on the faculty, and compares these findings to the male experience. The report also compares experiences and attitudes in the various departments and schools.

UCSF strives to recruit, retain, promote and support the highest quality faculty members. It, like other similar institutions, faces particular challenges in assuring the appropriate inclusion of all types of individuals among its faculty.

The specific charge of the survey was to assess and evaluate the climate and to look for changes that should be made to improve the environment. Belden Russonello & Stewart (BRS), a Washington, D.C.-based opinion research firm, surveyed by mail the UCSF faculty. The study was fielded in the spring and summer of 2001. Out of 1,787 individuals who were sent questionnaires, 1,057 were returned for a return rate of 60%.

Summary of the report: January 2002

The survey of the University of California, San Francisco faculty demonstrates that women and men at UCSF experience the University very differently. While they both derive great satisfaction from the kind of work they do, women have more critical views and negative experiences in numerous ways, from satisfaction with income to opportunities for leadership, to support for their lives outside of work. They call for the development of more mentoring and modeling, family-friendly policies, and financial recognition, to enable UCSF to attract and retain top female professionals.

I think we at Mount Sinai could use the UCSF survey's information in positive ways to improve our own institution.

Sandra K. Masur, Ph.D.
President, Women Faculty Group
Professor of Ophthalmology

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