Good things come in risky packages: The gift of a Women’s Studies education

An autobiographical essay that describes my journey through higher education as a returning adult student.  A shorter version of this piece was originally published in NWSAction. 16.2 (Spring 2005):

Life on the Front Lines: One Woman’s Evolution from Warrior to Diplomat

Why is it that many successful, intelligent women who surmount the numerous institutionalized barriers to study and work in science and technology ultimately leave? The first clue lies in the “war metaphor” in this paper’s title. Although the overt discrimination that women in science and technology historically experienced has diminished, for some women today it still feels like a war zone. This paper chronicles one woman’s battles in and out of science and technology in relation to three fundamential themes: 1) the male-oriented science culture; 2) the historical legacy of barriers to education and employment; and 3) epistemological and pedagogical limits. It is a story about a woman who went AWOL from science and technology to find a “both/and” peace in-between, and about how women’s studies facilitated her evolution from warrior to diplomat.  This essay appeared in NWSA Journal. 17.1 (Spring 2005): 45-57 and is available from

Redefining “Fairness”: A View from the Eye of the ABOR Tornado

"You can’t get a good education if they’re only telling you half of the story!!!” So, shouts the banner at the top of the Students for Academic Freedom web site, an organization that supports the so-called Academic Bill of Rights (ABOR). This essay asks and answers questions about academic "fairness" from my standpoint as a women's studies scholar. This piece was originally published in NWSAction. 17.2 (Spring 2006): 13-17.

10 tips for earning tenure and promotion without becoming the nutty professor

Tips from my experience of earning tenure and promotion at a Minnesota state university that I hope will help others who may not be getting adequate mentoring at their universities and colleges.  This piece has also been published in Inside Higher Ed