The Best of Our Knowledge
5:59 pm
Mon March 29, 2010

The Best of Our Knowledge # 1019

Albany, NY – GENDER ED: EDUCATING YOUNG WOMEN TO BE LEADERS IN SCIENCE AND EDUCATION -

Women's History Month is celebrating its 30th anniversary. And this year, its theme is Writing Women Back into History. That theme was chosen because, though women are often recognized in their own times, women are frequently left out of history books.

When the National Women's History Project began, less than 3% of the content of teacher training textbooks mentioned the contributions of women. Women of color and women in fields like math and science were omitted. This limited inclusion of women's accomplishments deprived students of important female role models.

Compare that with today. If you search the Internet for women and history and science, you'll find millions of citations. These extraordinary numbers give testimony to the tireless work of thousands of individuals and organizations to write women back into history, such as our first guests today.

They participated recently in leadership sessions at Miss Hall's School in Massachusetts. Miss Hall's was one of the first girls' boarding schools established in New England, and is nationally recognized for its rigorous college-prep curriculum. Students represent 18 states and 18 countries.

At that venue, TBOOK spoke with Dr. Deborah Merrill-Sands, Dean, Simmons School of Management and Sara Laschever, author of Women Don't Ask. Her work on Project Access contributed to the publication of two seminal studies including Gender Differences in Science Careers: The Project Access Study and Who Succeeds in Science?

Charlie Deitz reports. (5:37)

**(Attention Listeners. If you would like more information about Miss Hall's School in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, read about them online at www.misshalls.org.)**

NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION RESEARCH IN DISABILITIES EDUCATION SERIES

"ACCESS TO ADVANCEMENT: AN AUDIO EXPLORATION OF THE NATIONAL EFFORT TO INCREASE THE ROLE OF WOMEN WITH DISABILITIES IN SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING AND MATHEMATICS"

PROFILE STORY: DR. ANGELA LEE FOREMAN -

Our celebration of Women's History Month continues with the recognition of Dr. Angela Lee Foreman, Assistant Professor of Biology at the Rochester Institute of Technology, National Institute for the Deaf.

We heard from Dr. Foreman very briefly last week in our story about the TechGirlz summer program for middle-school girls who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. Foreman is a strong believer in mentoring and feels mentors should play a role in young people's lives throughout their education.

During last week's show, # 1018, online at http://www.wamc.org/prog-tbook.html, we also had another professor show the close linkage between diversity and STEM. Dr. Angela Foreman is a great example of that concept.

Allison Dunne reports. (5:46)

If you would like to hear this story again, or other similar stories in our exclusive radio series, visit our Women in Science website, www.womeninscience.org, and click on "Access to Advancement." You'll also find links to our Facebook page
and many related topics.

If you would like more information on the TechGirlz program, or perhaps you're thinking about applying for this coming summer's camp, click on this link: http://www.rit.edu/ntid/techgirlz/

We also invite you to view photos, access resources, and chat with others who are interested in women, disability, and STEM issues by joining our Women in Science Facebook group: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=60729571543&ref=ts

And you can receive updates on the availability of new stories on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/AccesstoAdvance

"Access to Advancement" is supported by the National Science Foundation
Research in Disabilities Education Program. Any opinions, findings, conclusions
or recommendations expressed in this story, are those of the authors, and do not
necessarily reflect those of the National Science Foundation.

THE AFGHAN INSTITUTE OF LEARNING -

To complete our special program on Women's History Month, we also honor the international efforts of Dr. Sakena Yacoobi. Professor Yacoobi is the Founder and Executive Director of the Afghan Institute of Learning. After 15 years, her goal remains to empower poor women and children by providing them access to education and health services through this organization, which is designed and operated by Afghan women.

The Institute reaches 350-thousand women and children annually through its 42 program sites, including 38 education learning centers. And 70% of its employees are women.

Afghan Institute of Learning programs cover a full range - from preschool, community schools, a home school project, and even the university level. College includes math and computer science subjects, as well a college of education for training Master Teacher Trainers. The Institute says it has trained more than 13-thousand teachers in student-centered teaching techniques.

TBOOK caught up with a busy Dr. Sakena Yacoobi recently when she was in the United States for a women's leadership conference.

Susan Barnett reports. (5:54)

**(Attention Listeners. The website given in the show at the end of this story for those seeking more information is www.afghaninstituteoflearning.org.)**