The Yale community—and the School of Medicine in particular—prides itself on equality. When it comes to gender balance, YSM thrives on the various perspectives of faculty, students, administrators, and alumni. This dialogue, with all its messiness and confusion, is the lifeblood of a vibrant scientific and socially just culture.
The stories in this issue bear witness to that principle. “Women at Yale School of Medicine: 100 years of progress,” by Kathleen Raven, talks about the challenges facing women who stepped into medicine in the early 20th century, as well as the challenges that stubbornly persist today. “Pioneering women’s health: Profiles in courage” by Jenny Blair, MD ’04, takes a look at some of the YSM doctors who helped blaze the path for women’s health. Ashley Taylor speaks with several current students about their experiences growing up as women in other cultures. And Jill Max compiles a moving tribute to Carolyn Slayman, PhD, a beloved administrator and YSM family member whose impact on the school defies measurement.
As YSM celebrates 100 years of women as students, it’s worth considering the remarkable achievements of all the women who have been or are part of the school—and the people who stood by them and helped advocate for justice. It’s also important to note that YSM is the kind of place where this type of progress is possible.