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Eileen Pollack

Discouraged from a promising career in science, Eileen Pollack published her 2015 memoir The Only Woman in the Room to unravel the many instances of sexism, large and small, which push women like her out of STEM fields. In 1976, Pollack was one of the first two women to graduate from Yale with a BS in physics. She then changed career paths and earned an MFA from the University of Iowa. Her short stories yielded accolades including two Pushcart Prizes, an NEA fellowship, and a spot in the 2007 Best American Short Stories, and her 2012 novel Breaking and Entering won the Grub Street National Book Prize. As of 2017 she has published two short-story collections, two novels, a children’s book, and several books of creative nonfiction. She also teaches in the MFA program at the University of Michigan. In 2013 she published an excerpt of The Only Woman in the Room in The New York Times Magazine, “Why Are There Still So Few Women in Science?” which laid out the lack of resources, encouragement, and opportunities she had faced in science from grade school through her Yale degree, and interviewed other women who had faced similar hurdles.

Date of Birth
Place of Birth
Liberty, New York

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Eileen Pollack." (Viewed on November 19, 2018) <>.


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