How Far Is the Jump? Gender Gaps in STEM Careers

March 21, 2017
By kcinthehouse GOLD, Lincolnshire, Illinois
kcinthehouse GOLD, Lincolnshire, Illinois
15 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard."-Tim Notke

The teacher asks the question: why leaves change in the fall? Soon, hands shoot up, but as the teacher looks around the room, she realizes only two out of the fourteen hands belong to girls in a class of thirty children. Situations similar to this one happen in classes in many schools. Gaps such as these happen not only in school, but in STEM careers as well. Because boys are exposed to math and science at an earlier age, the chance of them gravitating toward STEM careers increase, causing gender gaps. Gender gaps in STEM fields seem to have been around for a long time, and although new courses of action are being taken to close this gap, it will not happen overnight. In the STEM field, girls seem to struggle more than boys.


Throughout history, girls have proven to score weaker in science and math areas compared to boys. Lorraine Johnson believes pushing STEM earlier will help solve this problem. However, even if all girl schools, such as McCollough, install themselves for the benefits of girls, people still believe it needs to be sooner. Take a look at elementary television shows. Instantly, gender gaps show. Blaze and the Monster Machines for example, has the fundamentals of math and science. The situations given base themselves on the principles of math and science specifically. Television shows for girls, however, pertain nowhere near to science or math. Reviewing Sofia the First, the skills focus on social problems more than math and science. The princess, Sofia, worries not about calculating velocity or using PEMDAS, but rather how to show kindness towards others, how to include everyone, and what to wear when something happens to a dress. While social skills do show quite an importance, they do not help as much in the STEM field as math and science will.

In the same notion, working in a male dominated environment can intimidate most women out of the STEM field despite the promising payroll. Only 20% of women work in STEM careers. Having men criticise and scrutinize, and fears of creating critical errors can rattle the most confident of women. For example, people who made huge discoveries in math and science throughout history were found by male mathematicians and scientists such as: Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, and Isaac Newton.

Although many people say that boys dominate more than the women in the STEM field, many still consider the fact that women tend to have different interests than boys. Drifting more towards education and art, a majority of the women enter the teaching field. That does not make them dumber or weaker than boys, but stronger in knowledge in a different field. Others consider that people who voice themselves more tend to control that area. The eighth grade class at Saint Mary in Buffalo Grove have a small class of about twenty-eight students. In science and math class, a balanced number of girls and boys raise their hands to answer a question. The students who raise their hands the most tend to be the louder students. But, once high school comes around, the significantly greater amount of students could scare the once small class.

Taking the fact that the number of women in STEM fields are scarce, people believe that this affects not only the female gender, but companies in the STEM field in general. Statistics show that balanced work teams have an equal number of women and men in their teams. However, without an even number of women as men in the STEM field, having the balance becomes difficult. For women that enter into the STEM field, they will have an easier time finding a job because of the high demand.

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