RE: ProfNet query Women & education (fwd)

Ted Weverka (
Fri, 14 Aug 1998 18:45:53 -0700

Linda Purrington wrote:
> Wow, Ted, and that has such an interesting result

I was surprised as well by the data on high school graduation by sex. I had
imagined that boys used to graduate at rates higher than girls, or at least
the rates would be similar. It was intrigued to find that back when a high
school education was as much as most everyone got, women earned this at
rates 10- 50% higher than men.
Not a lot of people went to college till the GI bill sent so many men, and
that pushed the gender ratio through the roof.

> American women earn
> only 75 cents to the men's dollar. Or is it true that education means
> next to nothing in terms of merit for economic advancement?

Just because the high female/male ratio of current college degrees is equal
and opposite to the low female/male ratio of degrees from decades ago, this
doesn't mean the salaries should balance out. Most of this is, of course,
due to the fact that people's highest earnings come with age and experience.
The higher number of old men with education earn much more than the starting
salaries of the young women just out of school. The flip-flop in
discrepancy by sex of the number of college graduates should not show in the
average earnings until this current crop of graduates ages into their
highest earning years.

-Robert Weverka

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