Bridging the Gender Gap in the Field of Engineering
MetadataShow full item record
Despite efforts to increase female representation in STEM careers, the engineering field has struggled to recruit more women. While women make up half of the undergraduate population, only twenty percent of undergraduate engineering students are female (Yoder, 2017). In this paper, I explore aspects throughout women’s education and career that inhibit and discourage them from pursuing engineering. I examine factors in high schools, universities, and the industry that directly or indirectly affect women’s interest in STEM subjects. I researched the role of policies in enforcing this underrepresentation and how mentors and people in leadership positions can bridge the gap. I also focus on any societal and career expectations that make it difficult for women in these careers. I examine initiatives that have already been taken to increase female representation within engineering and then analyze how they have been effective and where they can still be improved. Using this research, I will outline a few tangible steps that can be taken by schools of all education levels, but Milligan specifically, in recruiting more women to the STEM field and retaining them in these careers.