ERIC Number: ED203836
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981
Senior-Level Administration: How Do Women Prepare?
A study was undertaken in 1979-80 to determine whether or not a consistent career pattern existed among women currently serving in senior-level administrative positions in higher education. Forty-four women in 41 institutions in 26 states were represented. Five were senior executive officers, and 39 were senior officers reporting directly to an executive officer. Tape recorded interviews were held in the women's home offices. The career patterns varied, the only generic stage for all being college attendance in late teens and early twenties. After this period, the women engaged in furthering their education (11), homemaking (5), and working (5 in higher education, 14 in elementary/secondary education, 9 in careers outside). In the first group, doctorates were earned between 25 and 32 and most women were immediately employed in higher education. The five early homemakers did this for from 4 to 23 years. Of these, one's first paid employment was as an institutional vice president. Only two of these five had obtained terminal degrees, at 37 and 45. Some of the women working immediately after college did take time off for homemaking, but otherwise the career patterns varied greatly, in administration, teaching, and other jobs. Women having moved to presidential positions had all begun in some area of education. Most of the academic vice presidents were from student services or elementary/secondary education backgrounds; other vice presidents came from other backgrounds. It appears that no prior career experience is a prerequisite for a woman becoming a senior-level administrator in state-supported higher education institutions. Middle-level administrative experience is the stage most often seen here, followed by studying for a terminal degree. Breaks for homemaking do not appear to have hampered these women. Higher level opportunities, however, do seem to be improved if early careers are in some area of education. (MSE)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A