A Scrapbook of the AAUW Convention in Middlebury on April 21, 2007
"Greatest Challenge, Greatest Need:
Women Finding a Public Voice in the 21st Century"
The main impression that most of us carried away from the convention
is that we met and heard from some extra-ordinary women in various
professions and stages of life. We were also impressed by the Middlebury
College students we met on Friday evening and during the day on Saturday.
Thank you, Middlebury Branch and Middlebury College!
As we finished our breakfast, we were warmly welcomed to the conference by Karin Hanta, Director of Chellis House -- the Women's Center at Middlebury College, Andrea Weisberg, President of AAUW of Vermont, and Peg Galgano, President of the Middlebury Branch.
Then Gail Smith, Associate Director of Athletics at Middlebury College, set the stage for the conference.
We particularly liked her quotes from a book written in 1871 about the "peculiar phases" of the feminine sex: maidenhood, marriage and motherhood.
Hanna faced her own stereotypes as a young lawyer. She related that she came to Vermont after a particularly humiliating experience -- She had passed out in court after facing a hostile judge who had yelled at her repeatedly.
She spoke more seriously of the lack of confidence we often have in ourselves and of her efforts to instill self confidence in her law students.
Eleanor Capeless, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at UVM, spoke about advances that women have made in medicine and that part time jobs are now possible and accepted.
She said that "finding the right partner" is the most important consideration in combining a medical career with motherhood and related her own solutions for "the sitter calling in sick" and the guilt associated with "missing" her daughter's first steps.
Vermont Law School Professor, Cheryl Hanna,related funny (and serious) stories from her child hood as a "latch key kid" and her mother's struggles in the "pink ghetto" as she raised two daughters while fending off the advances of her male bosses.