How NOT to help

Posted: October 28, 2010 by Jender in good intentions gone awry

My first year of graduate school in the late 90s I had a required class with one of the older female professors in the department. I had been looking forward to the class and to having her has a professor. It was horrible. Every time I tried to make a comment, I was shot down. I remember clearly once being asked “do you really think that was helpful?” In lamenting with other female grad students a couple of years ahead of me, one said that I should take this as a compliment–this professor always picked the strongest female grad student to pick on in class as a way of toughening her up, since her early experience was so tough in the discipline. Not sure I really want to say thanks for that, but, thanks.

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