How to make the UI more inclusive

A diverse group of UI students pose in front of the Admin Building.
UI students pose in front of the Admin Building.

By Rosemary Anderson 

For me and many others, receiving an education from the University of Idaho is one of the best gifts we’ve ever been given. The campus is beautiful, the faculty and staff are welcoming, and the student body is diverse–or is it?

According to the numbers, 71% of students are white and only 29% of students are people of color. For a national average, 58% of all college students in America are white and the remaining 42% are people of color. From the 1970s to today, these percentages have been shifting more towards middle ground.

Although the diversity numbers for the UI may be a little higher than other universities, it’s not something to be proud of, at least not yet.

After talking to a few professors on campus, I learned that the faculty at the UI is disparagingly white as well. I was told that there are only about two dozen faculty of color. So how can we make our classrooms more inclusive?

Continue reading “How to make the UI more inclusive”

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On Dirty Bathrooms and To-Do Lists

some notebooks near a computer

By Cindy Fuhrman

I should be cleaning the bathroom.

My partner Caleb is working out in the field (by which I mean that as a fish biologist, he is camped along a river with a crew sampling fresh water) and it would be the perfect opportunity to do some deep cleaning. I should go so far as scrubbing the walls and washing the light fixture, for I am not working this summer, and it seems like the right way to earn my keep, to feel like I am doing something useful.

Those were the thoughts going through my head this morning as I was walking along a two track behind the house. I have certain roles that I feel I am supposed to fulfill.  Certain tasks attached to my gender, and also certain unsaid rules I have attached to the relationship. But I am writing instead. The bathroom and all the other things I think I should be doing will have to wait. Along with the walk that was for my body, for my health and sanity, the writing is also part of my self-care, something that seems for women to fall in line behind caring for others, behind doing what we think should be done.

Continue reading “On Dirty Bathrooms and To-Do Lists”

A Day In The Life Of A Married College Girl

By: Madelyn Starritt

I am a busy girl, I go to school full time, have a job and a husband. I have a routine, a set schedule for what I do most days of the week but it is almost always go, go, go, rush on to the next thing I have to do and then go home and take a nap. I never actually take a minute and think about the things I get to experience in a day or how it makes me feel, so welcome to my journey! I have decided to document a day in my week to actually think about the things I do and feel and I’m bringing you all with me. Welcome to my Thursday complete with pictures and descriptions.

Continue reading “A Day In The Life Of A Married College Girl”

Sexism in the Academic World

By Kali Nelson

 I have always been told that I would one day go on to school after high school whether it be trade school, community college, or a 4-year school, it was always in my sight. I know my parents are setting me up to succeed, but college alone will not help me. I need to put in 110% to whatever it is I plan to do because if not I may be stuck somewhere I don’t want to be. My parents expect all three of their kids to get to college. Maybe they know, maybe they don’t, but the academic world is sexist.

 Throughout this post I will talk a lot about how women face sexism but this does apply to all minorities in the academic life. The main reason for this is because there haven’t been many studies done to see this aspect.

 Higher education has this illusion of being a white boys club. But women have been flooding the ranks of academic life for years now. In 2015, Time magazine reported that 37.5% of women between the ages of 25 to 34 had a bachelor’s degree, while only 29.5% of men did.  Despite these great numbers, women still face sexism in higher education. Let’s look at how many men compared to women get tenure in 2012. According to the American Association of University Professors, 62% were male and 44% of women. This is only startling if you look at what many universities base tenure on: reviews and publications. Reviews are left by students, mostly as the semester has ended, but can also be left on other websites like “Rate Your Professor”. These reviews usually are harsher on the women professors than they are on men. While this is not the students complete fault it has to do with society.

 Women in academia also have to handle the citation gap. This means that articles written by women received fewer citations then articles written by men. While the article I linked to says that the gap may be small it is detrimental to women because if their article is not cited, the women who wrote it cannot get credit for what they have contributed. Another thing that affects women negatively is the baby penalty. The women who want to get to the top of academic life usually must choose between having a family or having a high position. Women who want a family usually become a second tier faculty member. They fill part time positions or adjunct faculty spots. This hurts women but not men, men having a family actually helps their career.

 Women also have the problem of fighting the idea that sexism is dead in academia. It isn’t, women feel they have to work twice as hard to get the same position. While academia is lightening its attitude towards women it is still a hostile environment or them, some women may some of the only ones in their field. This causes a problem because how can women have equality if there are only a few in a huge field then how do they rise up to be equals.

 There is also the imposter syndrome. This is the feeling that no matter how qualified you are at what you’re doing, your colleges will find out that you shouldn’t be there. I suffer from this a lot. I recently got a job this summer and when I got to the meeting and I met everyone else, I felt that there had been a mistake. I couldn’t be qualified for this, I had so little experience, I felt that I had taken someone way more qualified for the job. This also happened when I got the ok for this position on this blog.  I thought that there were so many more qualified people to do this job, who was I a fairly well off, white girl to tell people what I thought about feminism. I know in my head that I am qualified to talk about feminism because I am a woman. Feminism is not just for one group but I still doubted myself about if I could do it. This is the impostor syndrome, now no matter how qualified I am for a position I still doubt. I had so little confidence in myself, I still think that sometimes I must work twice as hard to even compare with my male counterparts. This problem is not just me, it applies to every woman. This is not helpful to women, trust me, it has led to worry and stress and no sleep because anything less than perfect in anything I do is seen as a failure. People think I act like I’m smart because I like to, no I do it because I’m afraid that people will realize I shouldn’t be here. It’s terrifying. It has taken me a semester to get over the feeling that has plagued me for over a year, and I’m still not even close to over it. Every time I apply for something I trick myself to believe that I am not qualified for it, even if I am more than qualified.

 This is not something to be proud of, I work myself to the bone so that I may feel that I am adequate enough for a job. Women do not need all this extra pressure. We have so many other pressures to escape. I cannot speak for my counterparts but I continued on with school to escape this hell. I came to college to get away from the fear that the world put in me and I have found all new problems to face and one of them is sexism in college.

I am a Ball Cap Wearing, Wrench Wielding, Slinky Gown Having, Poem Writing, Chainsaw Owning, Didn’t Even Know I Was a Feminist, Feminist.

BY: CMarie Fuhrman

 

Get this.  A feminist walks into a bar, face smudged with ash, thick Carhartt bib overalls, long hair tucked in a cap, perfectly manicured nails, and a strapping fellow by her side.  They order two steaks, a beer each, and she has a salad, no dressing.  She fidgets as she tries to adjust her thong underwear.  When the check comes, he pays.  He holds the door as they walk out of the bar, and she climbs to a diesel pickup pulling a trailer full of wood.  He drives.

The funny thing is, she doesn’t know she is a feminist.  Continue reading “I am a Ball Cap Wearing, Wrench Wielding, Slinky Gown Having, Poem Writing, Chainsaw Owning, Didn’t Even Know I Was a Feminist, Feminist.”

Changing The World One Period At A Time

This is a photo of underwear, tampons, and pads
Photo: Madelyn Starritt

 

By: Madelyn Starritt

Products for people with periods, Thinx is a company based in NYC that makes underwear to wear during menstruation. They sell these period panties to women who want them and provide period products to girls who need them.

Co-founded by the CEO Miki Agrawal, Thinx started in 2014 to break the period taboo. They offer an online store that sells period panties (underwear to wear while menstruating) and other period products. They also work with afripads for every pair sold to provide affordable, reusable pads to girls in developing countries.

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Malala Yousafzai: A fearless advocate for education

By Madison Teuscher

Malala Yousafzai is unlike most teenagers her age—at the age of fifteen, she was shot by Taliban militants on her bus ride to school. These militants sought Malala—an outspoken supporter of girls’ education in her region, country, and the world. Their act of violence has brought forward the incredible story of a young woman whose shining spirit accompanies her bright vision for what the world can be—a place where education is a universal right for all children.

Malala Yousafzai smiles at the camera, wrapped in a bright blue and yellow headscarf.
Malala Yousafzai is a worldwide symbol of courage, optimism, and change.

The Pakistani region of Swat is characterized by clear rivers, tall mountains and lush valleys. This peaceful, paradise-like valley is where Malala Yousafzai called home, along with her mother, two brothers, and father. The affectionate family gave the young Malala a place to thrive. Since her birth, Malala has been celebrated by her parents, rather than rejected—or killed—like so many Pakistani girls.

Continue reading “Malala Yousafzai: A fearless advocate for education”