Mon Oct 26 13:07:20 EST 1992

First a brief personal history, and then a little perspective as Dean of Math 
and Sciences.  My husband and I agreed we wanted to start a family relatively 
early and planned a child to arrive just after I finished my PhD and before he 
completed his.  I was pregnant when I defended my thesis and completed my 
degree.  We lost that child through a very premature birth;  our son was born a 
year later.  Meanwhile I took a temporary, part-time lab job but did not work 
for six months after his birth.  I then returned to part-time teaching and 
began teaching full-time when he was a year old.  We adopted our daughter a 
year later and almost immediately went to post-doc positions for two years.  We 
next accepted a single, shared-position teaching job at a small, liberal-arts 
college for women and held that post for about 16 years.  We then moved into 
two full-time jobs, my husband in research and me in administration.  During 
the years we shared a job we were often successful in finding outside support 
for our research--much easier then than now.

As a Dean I see a pattern of women waiting until after a tenure decision is 
made before they start a family.  This has both advantages and disadvantages, 
as does any pattern.  The decision is never easy because you have so many 
factors to consider.  Of most importance is agreeing on what works for your own 
family and finding the sources of support you need to make it successful.

Barbara J. Byrne
Dean of Natural Sciences and Mathematics
Stockton State College
Pomona, NJ 08240
e-mail:  IAPROD at

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