COGEN seeks faculty members to serve mission of addressing gender equity

Jimena Sagàs
Jessica Metcalf

Colorado State University’s Council on Gender Equity on the Faculty has two openings for members from across campus to serve the mission of addressing issues facing faculty women.

COGEN, originally established in 2014 by CSU President Tony Frank as the Standing Committee on the Status of Women Faculty as part of the President’s Commission on Women and Gender, is looking to ll two vacant at-large seats this semester, according to co- chair Jimena Sagàs, an associate professor in Libraries.

While the council includes representatives of every faculty status from all eight colleges and the CSU Libraries, the at-large seats are designed to ensure gender diversity on the council itself, with at least two members who are men.

“Jimena and I are the new co-chairs of COGEN, and we’d like to expand the membership to continue work on gendered issues, like child care,” said Jessica Metcalf, associate professor in animal science. “We’d also like to look at the question of what is our role in addressing sexual harassment on campus and more broadly in higher education.”

COGEN works to advance the University’s goal of making Colorado State the best environment for women to teach, learn and work. It focuses explicitly on issues affecting the work life, campus climate, and persistent barriers inhibiting the success of all women faculty at CSU.

The council reports directly to President Joyce McConnell and plans on offering recommendations in areas of research, policy, and action that might help counter pervasive national challenges related to women in academia, including all disciplines where women are historically and currently underrepresented.

“As a council we would also like to present guest speakers and workshops for all faculty to discuss the culture for academic women today,” Sagàs added.

Recent COGEN initiatives have focused on the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic to women faculty, in particular how faculty evaluations could be a ected during the pivot to remote teaching and learning. The council is also lending its support to a program that would help researcher parents by training undergraduate STEM majors who want to become teachers to support their children’s remote learning, pending approval by CSU’s Pandemic Preparedness Team.