Ten faculty members in a conference room, all bright, active, energetic women in their 30s and 40s (plus one fiftysomething--me!), all eager to serve as mentors for incoming faculty, and as much as I'm enjoying their company, I have to wonder: where are the men?
Men were asked to serve, but apparently they're too busy.
Which is more likely to be true:
1. Male faculty members really are more busy than female faculty members.
2. Male faculty members are better at saying "No" than female faculty members.
3. Male faculty members are less nurturing and therefore less interested in mentoring new faculty members.
4. Male faculty members have less hope for the future of the institution and therefore less investment in new faculty members.
5. Women will do anything for a free lunch.
6. All of the above.
7. None of the above.
Frankly, people who don't want to serve as mentors probably shouldn't, but I know some men on campus who would do (and have done) a great job mentoring. Where are they this year?
Oh, that's right: they're busy. Good thing the rest of us have so much time on our hands!