At the same time, female full-time workers still make only $0.78 for every $1 earned by men, a gender wage gap of 22 percent (as of 2013), according to a study by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR). Just last spring, Patricia Arquette pointedly reminded us in her Academy Award acceptance speech: “It’s time for women to have wage equality in this country!” Indeed.
The path to wage equality for women may start with the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields (STEM). According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the fastest growing and highest-paid segment of the job market tends to be the STEM segment. A woman with a STEM job earns one-third more than a comparable woman in a non-STEM job, and the gap between men and women’s pay is smaller in STEM fields than in any other, as shown in IWPR studies.
The National Center for Educational Statistics reports that since the 1980s, more women than men earned bachelors and masters degrees. That gap has been widening ever since and now includes doctoral degrees. Yet women are currently underrepresented in all but one STEM field: science; specifically the physical and life sciences, according to the IWPR. In some STEM fields, the number of women is actually declining.
So, promoting STEM education for girls and making STEM jobs more attractive to qualified women isn’t only beneficial for women and their desire for wage equality, it’s also good for business and the economy.
Kathleen Willett graduated from college with a science degree and spent the rest of her career in STEM fields. A long-time Sonoma County resident, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A glass of perfectly chilled champagne to toast a milestone is one of life’s rituals, and pharmaceutical products are crucial for managing pain. While alcohol and prescription drugs have value...
In the pop culture of the ’60s, tie-dye attired hippies gathered in San Francisco’s Haight-Asbury district to smoke pot, protest the war in Viet Nam and advocate for civil rights. And th...
What has 100 trillion members, can make you feel exuberant or depressed, are as unique to you as a fingerprint and weighs less than four-and-a-half pounds? Give up? The colony of microorganisms, or ...