Professor of English Jessica Enoch Appointed ARHU ADVANCE Professor
September 14, 2021 English | College of Arts and Humanities
The position supports women faculty members’ career advancement at UMD.
By Rosie Grant
Professor of English Jessica Enoch has been named the 2021–22 ARHU ADVANCE Professor, a two-year role during which she will mentor and support ARHU faculty seeking to get published and promoted, find greater work-life balance and more.
ADVANCE faculty are part of the university’s ADVANCE Program, which is housed within the Office of Faculty Affairs and supports the recruitment, retention and professional growth of a diverse faculty through faculty networks, education and training, advocacy and research. Each college has an ADVANCE professor, which are all women.
Enoch, the director of the Academic Writing Program and a mother of three, said she has a particular interest in supporting working parents. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she has experienced firsthand the difficulties of balancing teaching with childcare and virtual school.
“I am especially concerned with women faculty who have taken on the brunt of childcare during the pandemic,” she said.
She also plans to help women and assistant professors of color acclimate themselves to the university and prepare for promotion.
ADVANCE began in 2010 as a five-year, NSF-funded campuswide project promoting institutional transformation with respect to the retention and advancement of women faculty in STEM. Since then it has increased the percentage of women in tenure-track faculty roles and was recognized by the National Science Foundation as an exemplary program.
Enoch was formerly a participant in two ADVANCE mentorships, under Professor of English Laura Rosenthal and Professor of Communication Linda Aldoory. With Rosenthal she participated in a group of associate professors who worked to complete their second monograph and earn promotion to full professor. The four women in this group have completed their books and have earned, or soon will earn, promotions. With Aldoory, Enoch took on the role of mentor to two associate professors, meeting virtually during the pandemic to discuss strategies for publication and promotion.
“I have seen firsthand the great benefit of the ADVANCE program,” she said.
Enoch was selected in coordination with the ARHU Dean's Office and will hold the position for two years. She is the third English professor to hold this appointment, after Professor of English Martha Nell Smith and Rosenthal.