Save the males!

Fred First starts with this premise:

My wife is a pharmacist who finished her RPh in the early 70s. There were 5 females in a class of about 100. Today, the mix is overwhelmingly female, as is the case in many medical schools and other professions. Parity has not been reached on many fronts, but some female gains might be won not because males are marching in place, but actually losing ground in academics and other settings.

He’s working on a longer piece to illustrate this phenomenon, and he’d be most grateful if you could supply him with citations to support (or refute) his premise.



  1. sya »

    10 December 2010 · 7:10 pm

    This reminded me of this recent comic that I’ve seen.

    There are only certain areas where it looks like that females are gaining. In engineering, math, and computer science, it’s still very much male dominated. And in some cases, the number of women going into those fields are even declining. (I recall reading about an international computer science competition for high schoolers where only one participant who ranked in the upper quartile was a girl.)

    I think it’s also that the notion of gender roles is still not dead–and perhaps still alive and kicking. Guys may still think that going into a macho field such as engineering or a blue-collar job is the only acceptable thing to do. And as a result, eschew all the other jobs and areas of study which they perceive as slowly getting “girly-fied”.

    Or, of course, you could say that kids these days are just over-medicated slackers. I’ve certainly met a number of them.

  2. sya »

    10 December 2010 · 7:11 pm

    Arg. I’ve just noticed several grammatical errors. It’s been a long week.

  3. fillyjonk »

    11 December 2010 · 7:03 am

    In our department, the Medical Sciences majors are overwhelmingly female (that is: the med-school, dental-school, PA-school, veterinary-school bound folks) and the Fish and Wildlife Management majors are overwhelmingly male.

    I think there’s some perception that the Medical Sciences track is “harder.” Or that you have to work harder to succeed at it. (though I don’t really think it is; it’s just “hard in a different way.”)

  4. sya »

    11 December 2010 · 10:50 am

    I think that’s true for a lot of places. The pre-meds and pre-vets anyway. There’s this assumption that it’s more difficult for female applicants to get in now, too, because it’s overwhelmingly female and the med and vet schools wish to have more balanced gender ratios.

    And I’ve heard stories about fish/wildlife/forestry and how it’s still an old boys’ club.

  5. fillyjonk »

    11 December 2010 · 1:22 pm

    Though once you figure out how to talk to the Fisheries and Wildlife guys, you’re pretty much in. A lot of them seem to like me and get along well with me. I think that’s because they know I don’t BS them about stuff, and I’m not exactly the touchy-feely kind of female professor who cares a lot about “feelings.”

  6. Nancy Reyes »

    12 December 2010 · 7:14 pm

    I don’t know about pharmacies, but in medicine, the profession used to be based on “male” oriented thinking: find the enemy and smite him.

    (scientific, goal oriented, aggressive search for the reason for the illness, and then ordering the patient to cooperate with the surgery or take his medicine).

    Now it’s oriented to women’s thinking:passivity and cooperation:

    (cooperate with your staff, you are members of a team, not the captain of a team… pretend your LPN knows as much as you do…or pretend that your nurse practitioners are just as good as docs who study 5 more years … obey the expert’s who tell you how to practice…, write every little detail and fill out every form correctly and neatly, (never mind that this means spending more time polishing up paper work for bureaucrats than talking to the patient)

    I’m from the “Sarah Palin” wing of feminism, (thinking like a man but loving my own man)… so I retired early rather than put up with all this caribaopoop.

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