Phoebe writes to the Register about the challenges faced by women and people of color at Yale:
During the first decade of Richard Levin’s presidency at Yale, 87 percent of new women hired, and even higher percentages of black women and international women, were forced into the increasing number of nontenured positions. Levin blames the lack of female faculty members and faculty members of color on the “relatively small number” choosing to get doctorates. But those women of color in nontenure-track positions certainly were not promoted; often, as was the case with chemistry professor Connie Allen, beloved teacher and one of shamefully few women of color in the sciences, they were not even retained. So long as the university refuses even to hold an open forum on these issues, much less meet its graduate teachers’ demands for fair pay, fair grievance procedures, and fair recognition of their majority-certified union, how will that “relatively small number” ever increase?
And Sociology graduate students write the YDN:
Yale is a part of society, and the reduction of social inequality should be a priority for all members of our community. We are deservedly proud that Yale leads in scholarship and research. Our institution has also exercised leadership in community and social programs, both on- and off-campus. But we can still do better. How else can one explain the extreme dearth of individuals from disadvantaged groups on our campus, particularly among tenured faculty, other than by concluding that Yale hasn’t done enough to find and keep those with quality ideas and scholarship? Surely Kirchick doesn’t mean to imply that they don’t exist? The issue is not that diversity problems are not “Yale’s fault.” It is that getting real outcomes at Yale is everyone’s responsibility. We’re not talking about quotas. We’re talking about a change in the process. That’s why GESO and Local 35 asked for something simple: a public forum. In the interest of realizing a fairer and more equitable society, we reiterate the simple request that prompted Mr. Kirchick’s dismissive and mean-spirited column. We call on the administration to enter into an open discussion with the Yale community on this issue.