August 16, 2019

PCOR K12 Alum Dr. Kristin Ray Collaborates with Colleague to Tackle the "Baby Penalty"

ICRE alum and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics Kristin Ray, MD, MS, joined colleague Jacqueline Burgette, DMD, PhD, in addressing the challenge faced by many parents—particularly women—in academia: the “baby penalty,” or the concept that having and caring for a child can limit the career trajectories of working parents.

Dr. Burgette and her husband both attended the 2017 AcademyHealth Annual Research Meeting and faced the challenge of presenting their research while caring for their 10-month-old daughter—who was not permitted in the poster hall. Following this experience, Dr. Burgette contacted her colleague Dr. Kristin Ray and they worked together to collect responses from about 50 parents in academia regarding the challenges of attending academic conferences. Drs. Burgette and Ray compiled the survey data and presented it to the leadership of AcademyHealth along with several recommendations. The leaders of AcademyHealth were receptive to the recommendations and childcare was provided at the 2019 conference.

To learn more about Dr. Burgette and Dr. Ray’s work, please see the University of Pittsburgh Pittwire’s article. Dr. Ray’s involvement in addressing the “baby penalty” has emphasized the importance of making gender equity a priority, and is yet another example of how the Institute for Clinical Research Education’s alumni are changing the landscape of clinical research.

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