I've been saying my goodbyes quite a bit this week to colleagues. Most are happy for me, sad to see me leaving, but understanding.
Saying goodbye to graduate students is more difficult. In the past two weeks, four female PhD students have come into my office on separate occasions to say goodbye. All were crying or nearly crying. None are members of my group, and some I don't know well. I've always made a point to say hello to them, and maybe chat for a few minutes - but I didn't understand how much that meant to them until I've got them crying in my office. I feel like I'm letting down women at my Ivy League U, but I've got to go and take care of myself and my family. I'm sad that yet another woman (myself) is leaving this Ivy League U. It's very difficult to retain women here.... we could spend a long time talking about why, but not on a blog. Anyways, I think that female graduate students are suffering because of the lack of female leadership here. Nuf said.