Re:Gender works to end gender inequity and discrimination against girls and women by exposing root causes and advancing research-informed action. Working with multiple sectors and disciplines, we are shaping a world that demands fairness across difference.
The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport, at the University of Central Florida releases its “Keeping Score When It Counts" series periodically. It documents comprehensive analysis of statistics involving the graduation rates of Division I collegiate athletic teams in selected sports.
In 2012, the study of graduation rates for teams in the women’s college basketball championship tournament found higher numbers than those in the men’s event and a smaller disparity between white and black players.
Findings and insights from Egon Zehnder International’s Global Academic Leadership Survey
Most leading academic institutions are strongly committed to diversity, a commitment visible in their policies on staff recruitment and student admissions, as well as in their academic programs. Yet how diverse are their leaders? A survey by Egon Zehnder International of over 300 top universities and research institutions worldwide shows that the most senior level of academic leadership remains overwhelmingly male and locally-born.
The 1.7 million members of the Class of 2011 witnessed, within the four-year span of their college careers, one of the greatest bull markets in United States history and the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. Last spring, they shed their caps and gowns and joined a kind of B.A. bread line. Unemployment among recent liberal-arts graduates, at 9.4 percent, was higher than the national average, and student-loan debt, at an average of nearly $25,000, had reached record levels. Worse still, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics was reporting that only 5 of the 20 jobs projected to grow fastest over the coming decade would require a bachelor’s degree. Though the statistics still show that a college degree correlates with both higher income and lower unemployment in the long run, diplomas didn’t seem very valuable when they were handed out last May.
Graduating seniors at schools like Drew University in Madison, N.J., have felt the stresses of the job market acutely. For all its merits — including a much-admired theater department and a prestigious Wall Street internship program — Drew ranks 94th among 178 private liberal-arts colleges on U.S. News & World Report’s annual list. The middle of the collegiate pack is not where you want to be when you’re competing for a diminishing number of entry-level jobs.
Members of Drew’s Class of ’11 are typical of their peers nationally in that their success in the job market seems to have less to do with their G.P.A.’s or their persistence and more to do with their family connections, fields of study, networking skills and luck. How else to account for the unemployed Phi Beta Kappa waiting by a silent phone? Or the anthropology major who is forgoing grad school to become a dog groomer? Or the English major who can’t earn enough money to make the monthly payment on her $128,000 student loan? (Drew is unusually expensive; tuition plus room and board run more than $50,000 a year.) Equals on campus, the 309 members of Drew’s Class of ’11 are already being divided into the 99 percent and the 1 percent. Seven months after graduation, The Times Magazine spoke with 226 of them about their rough journey into the real world.
The Violence Against Women Act, a groundbreaking piece of legislation addressing domestic and sexual violence, was first enacted in 1994 and then reauthorized in 2000 and 2005. Among the measures the act has taken to protect victims and prevent abuse, the law strengthened the legal action taken against perpetrators of domestic violence and provided services, including rape crisis centers, hotlines, and community support programs, for its victims. Congress is now debating its reauthorization, as the law expired in September, and while it has received broad bipartisan support in the past it has recently come under political fire from some Republican lawmakers who object to provisions which Democrats have added to this year’s reauthorization. Critics specifically object to provisions which would expand the law’s coverage to illegal immigrants, homosexuals, and American Indians, who would have greater authority to persecute non-Indians who commit crimes against American Indian women. Republicans argue that these were purely political additions designed to induce GOP lawmakers to oppose an otherwise popular bill, giving Democrats more ammunition in their campaign argument that Republicans are “anti woman.” Furthermore, some conservative activists object to the law entirely, arguing that it does not cut down on—and might even increase—instances of domestic abuse while overextending the federal government’s jurisdiction. Should the Violence Against Women Act be reauthorized? Here is the Debate Club’s take:
The twelfth installment of the Allstate/National Journal Heartland Monitor polling series focused specifically on the different experiences and economic expectations of men and women in the changing economy. This survey catalogues experiences of men and women in their home, family, and professional life, and gathers perspectives on the idea of opportunity in society and the workplace in the present day and how opportunity has and will change across generations. The survey also measures Americans' opinions about the changing gender profile of the country's workforce and what factors contribute to the continuing wage gap.
Only 14.3 percent of Division I coaches are women, the fewest since 1992, according to a national survey by the former Brooklyn College professors R. Vivian Acosta and Linda Jean Carpenter.
Longtime female coaches say that many qualified candidates, especially those who are mothers or plan to be, leave the profession rather than juggle the demands of coaching and motherhood.
Fewer, they say, are willing to uproot their families to pursue jobs, as men routinely do, or toil for 10 years at modest pay for a chance to be a head coach when so few women are hired. Most Division I assistants make $40,000 to $50,000 a year. The median salary for Division I head coaches is $125,100, according to the 2004-10 N.C.A.A. Gender Equity Report.
In the next five years, STEM jobs are projected to grow twice as quickly as jobs in all other fields according to the U.S. Bureau of Statistics. While all jobs are expected to grow by 10.4 percent, STEM jobs are expected to increase by 21.4 percent. Similarly, 80 percent of jobs in the next decade will require technical skills.
By this measure, future STEM jobs represent a huge opportunity to today's students. But to put these numbers into perspective, of the 3.8 million ninth graders in the U.S., only 233,000 end up choosing a STEM degree in college, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. This means only 6 percent of ninth graders will become STEM graduates. And of these graduates, women will be even more underrepresented in most STEM fields.
These are alarming statistics. How do we get more young boys and girls to be interested in STEM-related fields? It isn't an easy task. Schools do not always adequately prepare students for these rigorous subjects, and college programs are designed to weed out the less persistent. Nationally, only 41 percent of initial White and Asian American STEM majors who begin a degree in STEM-related fields complete their degree in less than six years.
In addition, societal pressures continue to loom over girls who might otherwise consider the STEM fields. A couple of years ago, I met amazing parents, both of whom had a background in engineering and hoped their 10 year-old daughter would follow in their footsteps. They encouraged her to take an after school science/robotics program. When she got there, she found she was outnumbered 6:1 by boys in the class. As the only girl, she came home crying much of the time because she was teased and told that geeky girls are not welcome in the boys' club. Ironically, by the time young adults are entering college programs in STEM fields, many complain about the lack of gender diversity.
Overall, women in these fields, collectively known as STEM, for science, technology, engineering and mathematics, are staying in these positions at the same rate as men, according to work done by Deborah Kaminski of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Cheryl Geisler of Simon Fraser University.
"This is really good news, it means if we hire them we are going to be able to keep them," Kaminski said in a podcast released by the journal Science, in which the study appears. The two also found that men and women receive promotions at about the same times.
In these fields overall, half of faculty will have departed within 10.9 years of their careers. One discipline bucks the overall trend, however. In mathematics, half of women leave by 4.45 years, and half of male faculty by 7.33 years into their careers, the study found. (A study released this week found that due to the demands of a professorship, many women choose motherhood over academics in math and science fields.)
Men file far more patents than women do, but women are securing an increasing number of patents and trademarks, according to a recent study by the National Women’s Business Council, a government advisory panel.
In 2010, 22,984 patents were granted to women, a 35 percent jump over the previous year. The increase for men was only 28 percent.
“Overall, women held 18 percent of all patents granted in 2010, compared to the 14 percent they had a decade earlier. In 1990, they earned only 9 percent,” the study found.
Interestingly, the NWBC paper found that the highest rate of increase in the grant of patents to women was in the 1986-1993 period, and the slowest rate was in the 1999-2006 period, during the dot-com bubble.
The picture for trademarks was even better. Women nearly doubled their share of trademarks within a 30-year span.