SNU Dept. of ECE will recruit its first female professor in 72 years (Yonhap News, 20180819)

2018-08-29l Hit 458

Two female professors to be appointed… Currently all 61 ECE professors are male

For the first time in 72 years, a female professor will be appointed in Dept. of ECE, SNU.

SNU College of Engineering announced on the 19th that Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering will recruit
two female professors from all fields including electricity, electronics, control, and computer.

College of Engineering is planning to post the official faculty opening notice in September after obtaining final approval from university headquarters. The appointment is scheduled for March 1st next year.

A source from the College of Engineering explained, “The number of female students is gradually increasing, but the percentage of female professors is lagging behind. There are few female faculty applicants, which is why we restricted the applicants to women this time.

For 72 years since Dept. of Electrical Engineering was established at SNU in 1946, not once was a female professor recruited as a full-time faculty member. Even after 2012, when the department changed its name to Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, there were no female professors. Currently, there is a total of ten female professors in SNU College of Engineering’s eleven departments and graduate schools, which amounts to 3.13%. According to college statistics in 2017, among the 6340 students (undergraduate and graduate students) enrolled in College of Engineering, there are 5348 male students and 992 female students, which is 15% of the whole. Because the ratio of female professors is significantly low even when compared to the ratio of female students, there is criticism that a “men-only barricade” still exists within the faculty of SNU College of Engineering.

In particular, along with Dept. of ECE, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Dept. of Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering, and Graduate School of Engineering Practice do not have a single female professor. Dept. of ECE, with the largest number of professors in College of Engineering, has 61 professors, entirely male. An ECE professor noted, “There seems to be no female professor due to the characteristics of the field. We have tried to appoint excellent professors without considering gender, but it seems as if women were relatively excluded. As more female scholars have shown excellent accomplishment, this recruitment will progress smoothly.”

Earlier this year, SNU Dept. of Economics recruited a Korean female professor for the first time in 72 years. SNU College of Social Sciences posted a faculty opening notice restricted to females to abide by the Framework Act on Gender Equality and Public Educational Officials Act, according to which ‘policies necessary for equal rights for both genders’ shall be formulated and implemented.

A source from SNU said, “More people are raising concerns that there should be at least one female professor in a department. If there are female professors, it will be easier for female students to dream about ‘become professors’.

Translated by: Jee Hyun Lee, English Editor of Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering,