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Sociology Professor to Present Henderson Lecture Oct. 12

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Dr. Phyllis Kitzerow, Westminster College professor of sociology, will present the 2011-2012 Henderson Lecture Wednesday, Oct. 12, at 7 p.m. in the Witherspoon Maple Room of the McKelvey Campus Center.  The event is free and open to the public.

"High Hopes, Mixed Outcomes: Women Who Finished Law School by 1975," focuses on Kitzerow's interviews with a group of 65 women to examine their career paths, experiences, and the effect of gender on their legal careers.

Since 1970, the percentage of female law school graduates has risen from five percent to nearly half today.  Kitzerow's research explores the varied experiences of these women late in their law careers, their perceptions of how things have or have not changed, and their perceptions of whether gender still matters in law.

"My project addressed the questions of the degree to which they perceive gender equity as having been reached and what the career paths have been for the women studied," Kitzerow wrote.  "Concerns with success, satisfaction, and work-family balance were explored at length.  This work is relevant and useful both for gender studies and sociology in that it applies our understanding of gender to a particular example."

Kitzerow, who joined the Westminster faculty in 1978, earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Wisconsin and master's degree and Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh.  She was recognized with Westminster's 2011 Distinguished Faculty Award.

The Henderson Lecture was founded by the late Dr. Joseph R. Henderson and his wife, Elizabeth, to encourage and recognize original and continuing research and scholarship among Westminster College faculty, and to afford the opportunity for faculty to share their learning with the academic community.  Dr. Henderson was a professor of education emeritus at Westminster, having served as chair of the Department of Education and as director of the Graduate Program.

Each year, Westminster faculty members may nominate themselves or others to receive the lectureship, which includes a stipend to support a specific research project.  A faculty committee chooses the winner.

Contact Kitzerow at (724) 946-7252 or email for additional information.

Dr. Phyllis Kitzerow