Written By Prarthana Prasad
Girls are systematically tracked away from science and math throughout their education, limiting their education, limiting their training and options to go training and options to go into these fields as adults.
Women make up only 28% of the workforce in STEM and men vastly outnumber women in most STEM fields in college. The gender gaps are particularly high in some of the fastest-growing and highest–paid jobs of the future, like computer science and engineering.
Engineering and computer science are the most lucrative STEM fields but are heavily male-dominated. Giving women equal opportunities to pursue a career in STEM is important. These careers help narrow the gender pay gap and ensure a diverse group of people are working together. Fields such as computer science and engineering have the lowest percentages of women workers, there are some key factors perpetuating gender STEM gaps like gender stereotypes, male-dominated cultures, fewer role models, math anxiety, etc.
The confidence gap is more between girls and boys. By the time students reach college, women are significantly underrepresented in STEM. Women are focusing on two broad aspects of their experiences. Numerical underrepresentation and negative stereotypes contribute to negative environments for women in STEM. Negative gender-based experiences, such as sexual harassment, are more likely to occur in male-dominated settings like the sciences. Specifically, women may experience greater performance pressure because they are highly visible as tokens and are expected to represent “women” as a group. Women faced negative interpersonal experiences and structural barriers .female faculty members in social science and natural sciences reported more perceived gender discrimination related to hiring, promotion, salary, space, equipment, access to administrative staff and graduate student or fellow assignments as well as sexual harassment. These findings support the notion that such behaviours are a way to penalize women for working in male-dominated fields and to communicate that they are not welcome in such environments.
To archive successful careers in industry women scientists and engineers were advised to set objectives, meet performance requirements and seek opportunities for self-development. Women in management can and should use this power and influence to improve the situation for other women. They are frustrated by the constricted opportunities and obstacles they found in the industry. What benefits women usually benefits men. What we need to do is show how these changes make sense for us as a society, however, society cannot change until people change, changes is an important page in the manual for the survival of women in industry equality can only be archived as both men and women are emancipated from the past and willingly reject traditional beliefs, values, and methods.
Featured Image Courtesy – The Pitt News