More on girls leaving science
lkista at unm.edu
Thu Apr 1 11:25:18 EST 1999
Very good point Valerie!
Think this is part of the remaining bastion of discrimination: It is
assumed that the AVERAGE white male is competent, while a woman or person
of color must be excellent to even deserve a crack at the same position.
This is part of the unspoken assumption underlying the current
anti-affrimative action movement. So often I hear things like "Well, there
was this woman/African American/Hispanic hired for this position and they
were really awful", as if there had NEVER in the history of the world been
a white male who took awhile to get up to speed or was out and out
incompetent or who got his job not because of his qualifications, but
because of who he knew.
The assumption is that a white male deserves the job (I often hear
references to "our" jobs) and that anyone else must be more than competent
to be taken seriously. And I think to a certain extent the rest of us
internalize this a bit, thinking WE don't deserve to be taken seriously
unless we are excellent.
Bella Abzug once said something to the effect that we will have not
acheived true equality until a female schlmeil can get just as far in life
as a male schlmeil. I think she is right on the mark, as was Valerie!
On 31 Mar 1999, Valerie Cardenas Nicolson wrote:
> Here's a thought my sister (an engineering professor) and
> I (also a PhD engineer) share--
> We both knew *many* male engineers in undergrad that
> were perfectly content with 2.0 GPAs. I think I knew
> one woman engineer with a GPA that low. All the other
> women engineers were *outstanding* students. The
> women who were average engineers switched to
> business or some other major where they could
> get As and Bs. Until it becomes "OK" for a woman
> to be an "average" engineer (with equal chances of
> employment as an "average" male engineer), we're
> going to lose them at the undergrad level.
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