By ALAN FINDER and SARA RIMER
Harvard University is planning to name the first woman president in its 371-year history — Drew Gilpin Faust, a historian who runs a research institute at the university, according to university officials close to the selection process.
Dr. Faust’s ascension would come a year after Lawrence H. Summers, a former Treasury secretary, resigned from the post amid fierce faculty discontent. The opposition erupted in part over Dr. Summers’ suggestion that intrinsic aptitude could help explain why fewer women than men reach the highest ranks of science and math in universities.
Harvard’s 30-member Board of Overseers is to meet Sunday and is expected to give her final approval, according to the officials. Dr. Faust is currently dean of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, by far the smallest of Harvard’s schools. Much of the research sponsored by the institute, which is named after Radcliffe College, once the women’s college at Harvard, emphasizes the study of women, gender and society. (more…)