The President of Women’s Studies Advisory Council (WOSAC), November Prentiss, has dedicated much of her career to empowering women and other underrepresented individuals, offering opportunities to learn and do more. She is the Manager of Faculty Affairs for the College of Behavioral Sciences at the University of Arizona. Her focus is recruiting and retaining exceptional faculty.
To that end, November created a 15-month onboarding program uniting the best practices from non-profit, corporate, educational, and governmental agencies. This program focuses on the new faculty experience with an eye towards long-term retention, better serving underrepresented minority faculty and community engagement across campus.
Hailing from San Diego by way of the Pacific Northwest, November earned her Ph.D. in Gender and Women's Studies from the University of Arizona with a minor in Rhetoric, Composition, and the Teaching of English, and certificates in mastery for College Teaching and Teaching English as a Foreign Language. With a career in education, it is no surprise that November is passionate about learning.
“Want to learn a new skill? Tell your boss. Enroll in an online course. Watch a YouTube video. Don’t ever stop learning.”
From 2010 – 2014, November was the Director for Women in Science and Engineering. She worked within Arizona to bring STEM learning to K-12 students, low socioeconomic communities, and underrepresented students across the state. Utilizing a combination of educational leadership and pedagogical strategies, internal and external collaboration, and a hearty internship program, November and her team increased participation in the program from 500 people annually in 2009 to over 5000 in 2014.
Throughout November's work in teaching and mentoring future leaders she employs the philosophy of being purposefully transparent with her mentees, not shying away from sharing both the highs and the lows of pursuing your dreams. She embraces the opportunity to have tough conversations with her mentees.
“If you have a good adviser or mentor, they will occasionally push you to do something that makes you anxious. Embrace it!”
Thinking about the future of women in leadership, November notes that the path to parity may present challenges, “We are seeing a tension in perceptions of the old way of doing things and the radically new way of doing things. In reality, they aren’t so different, but folks are having to confront how they think women should lead in comparison to how men lead or how they think men lead.”
With mentors like November Prentiss, future leaders are sure to overcome these challenges, offering a brighter future for everyone. Thank you, November, for being an inspiration and mentor to our future leaders!