Thursday, April 19, 2007

The Way Dr. Sandler Became An Academic

Dr. Sandler didn't ever feel like she wanted to be a leader when she was younger. She didn't seek the position. She loved school though, and found fun in learning. She was competitive against boys explaining “There were two twin boys who were smarter than me and that bothered me because I wanted to be first and wasn’t!” She didn't shy away from her roles. She didn't become successful for the recognition or respect at all but was given respect because she accomplished a lot. (Interview with Dr. Sandler)

She says she was elected head of her class in 3rd or 4th grade but that was the only leadership role she ever took when she was young. She didn't want to be a leader. At that time girls were not encouraged to be dominant as leaders. She did take some leadership roles in an all girls camp she always went to. She was "always on camp council" and enjoyed it.
But as for women's issues she was never trying to command and dictate things. She just started doing things for causes she cared about and people "identified me as a leader because I was getting a lot of things done." It just happened naturally without her control, which is ideal for a role model. It took her a while to recognize herself as a leader. She just wanted to help the women she felt needed support and guidance. She definitely also wanted to make sure that other women felt comfortable and encouraged to speak up.
She received her Bachelors degree with cum laude honors from Brooklyn College, majoring in psychology. She then proceeded to get her masters in Clinical and School Psychology at the College of the City of New York. As if this wasn't enough education and work, she still went farther. I believe it was because she realized that she could have a great affect on many people and would like to contribute to the education of others, and in particular women. She got her teaching certificate/education degree in Counseling and Personnel Services at the University of Maryland.
During and after school she took an active approach to making women feel safe, comfortable and respected in a college atmosphere within the classroom as well as walking the streets of a university. Her famous book and article “The Chilly Climate” had something to do with some sex discrimination she experienced in her childhood. The word “discrimination” didn’t really exist at that time, so what she was experiencing couldn’t be labeled but regardless it felt unfair to her. She says “when you don't have words like ‘sexual harassment’ or ‘sex discrimination’ it is hard to think of something as a pattern or even to conceptualize about it.” In her school there were some duties and opportunities that females were not allowed to perform or participate in. She says what disappointed her was “ that girls couldn't be crossing guards, or run the slide projectors, or go to the basement to fill a large ink bottle which would then be used to fill the small "ink wells" on everyone's desk.” But she only saw this as frustrating or disappointing. She never realized at that age that she could do something about it. (Interview with Dr. Sandler)
She also showed great concern and support to the equality and respect shown in job opportunities in higher education. This led to the passing of Title IX. All this work and educational foundation as well as her passion to improve the environment of others have led the way to her being an academic as well as a role model.

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