Women face ‘concrete ceiling’ in advancing in higher education

The Hill
By Brooke Migdon
January 21, 2022

“Let’s stop trying to fix the women and instead fix the system,” Andrea Silbert, president of the Eos Foundation, said in a statement. “What we are seeing is systemic bias.”

Just over a fifth of leadership positions at the nation’s most elite research universities have been filled by women, according to a new report ranking more than 100 universities along gender and racial lines. Among women of color, leadership roles are virtually nonexistent.

The report, released Thursday by The Women’s Power Gap Initiative at the Eos Foundation, found women accounted for just 22 percent of university presidents and 26 percent of board chairs.                             

The gender gap is even more pronounced among women of color, who make up just 5 percent of presidents. While the number of Black male university presidents has roughly doubled since 2020, women of color have yet to see similar gains, according to the report.

Of the 130 research universities studied, only nine – or just 8 percent – have an equal number of men and women on their boards, while no schools have reached gender parity among tenured professors.

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