KerryAnn O'Meara Speaks on Female Faculty Members of Color Receiving No Benefits for Extra Diversity Work
KerryAnn O'Meara touches on how female faculty members of color are disproportionately requested to fulfill diversity and inclusion work with no extra benefits regarding their salaries or promotion.
O'Meara and her University of Maryland colleagues, Dawn Culpepper and Alexandra Kuvaeva, identify how racial and gender inequalities usher a heavier workload and less praise for female faculty members. O'meara's research shows that workload is unfairly distributed among women and even less unfairly among women of color.
O'Meara suggests a strategy to solve workload inequities severely affecting women of color. The proposal is to make workloads transparent, meaning women of color faculty members know their expectations in terms of numerical requirements for courses taught and student appointments. She believes in this type of system that faculty members will understand how their workload is related to their rewards.
O'Meara has received backlash from departments concerning transparency. They fear implementing more transparency will only lead to more pressing issues arising. However, she remains hopeful that departments realize a pressing issue is already prominent and help better the careers of female faculty members of color.
O'Meara is a current Professor of Higher Education and Distinguished Scholar-Teacher for the Department of Counseling, Higher Education, and Special Education. She served as the 2020 President of the Association for the Study of Higher Education and serves as Special Assistant to the President for Strategic Initiatives.