The University of Maine
The President's Council on Women


Minutes April 24, 2006

Present: Sandy Butler, Pauleena MacDougall, Sharon Barker, Ann Schonberger, Diane Genthner, Laura Brothers, Heather Westwood, Diane King, Susan Iverson, Janet Waldron

Announcements: The President will host a tea for outstanding women in the University community on May 9 from 4-5:30 pm.  Our May meeting will be with the president on May 17 at Alumni Hall.

Discussion: President’s office asked us to limit the invitations to fifty, we already have 90, should we include students? Yes, we will include students who have won awards.

Robin Toderian and Maggie Palmer reported on changes in the Women’s Program at Cutler Health Center. 

The Center hired a consultant (Robin) to review center and make recommendations.

Her suggestions were followed. They were:

1. Reorganize administration

2. Focus on core mission of the center

3. Prepare a strategic plan for best practices.

They put a business manager at the top, introduced physicians from EMMC, gave each group a voice, increased exposure of staff to EMMC expertise. Students can quickly move to EMMC care when needed.  There is 24/7 physician coverage.

There are 2 major forums: 1. management team, 2. clinical team

Services for women include ambulatory-acute care and women’s services:  ob gyn NP’s.

Women’s services more extended than before. Includes education, outreach into the university community (dorms), improved attitudes, team building. Dick Young is the interim director. There is now more emphasis on privacy, improved service. Students are getting excellent care. The Center does exit evaluations with its students. A survey goes to the student’s desktop and they can responded anonymously.

Students can purchase a “Cutler Care pkg.”

Only about 20% of students use the health center. For many, parent’s insurance pays for off-campus care.

Cutler doesn’t offer sliding scale.

Search for practice manager is taking place now. The position will require business and healthcare experiences in an educational environment and non-profit status.

Cutler health care changes are on the web.

Suisan Iverson articles on diversity. (tabled)

Discussion of SWA difficulties over bake sale flap. (Students charged different amounts to men and women to educate students about pay scale inequities.  They did not make it clear they were asking for a suggested donation.  They have been censured by the student senate and have to make a formal apology to get reinstated.)  Sharon Barker suggested they apologize that their publicity was not clear that this was a suggested donation and ask senate to help them with their anti-discrimination efforts.

WSA lost discretionary funding for next year. (Cabinet vetoed senate approval of funding).

Sharon Barker reported on Wage clubs—pay equity discussion groups. 80 national 40 in Maine. Portland YWCA, Maine Women’s Fund, Policy Center on board. Maine is taking the lead in the country. (She is writing a grant to assist with the project) Pay equity bake sales are common.

There was discussion about University breakfast club conversations that have moved in a misogynist direction, with women students getting silenced.

Can PCW support SWA?  We decided to send a letter of support to the senate. The letter should include statistics about the wage gap for UM’s graduates.  We should also send a letter to the Maine Campus about the issue. Maine Campus editorials have been misogynist lately.

Pauleena will prepare a draft of the letter and send it to council for review.

For next year: We will review the studies that have been conducted on the status of women at UM and present a summary to University to leaders and ask them to tell us about progress that has been made (or hasn’t).  Sandy and Pauleena will review the reports and prepare a summary.

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