I Am A Woman, Here Me Roar

I go to an all women’s college. Most of you know that. In my Writing 101 class, we were assigned readings from the Women’s College Coalition website, and as I read the two articles I copied and pasted some of the quotes I found really interesting. I’ll be honest, I’ve gotten a lot of negative comments for attending the school I go to. There was, and will be I’m sure, a lot of “You’re going to a WHAT?” “Oh god I could never do that.” “How will you survive?” “Why would you ever want to inflict that on yourself?” etc. You get the point. There was a lot of that during and after my decision process and a lot of those comments hurt. Deciding where to go to school is not easy, it’s very hard actually, and after you struggle through that decision and are secretly second guessing it, hearing things like that is not helpful at all. That’s not that point though. I’ve moved on from the comments. I am surrounded here by people who made the exact same choice that I did. They understand, and even if you would never have made the same choice we all did, these quotes are very insightful. The education of women is vital to our future.

On The Education of Women

“Imagine a world in which women were denied the opportunity to learn broadly, where millions of women were unable to read or write, a world where women were disenfranchised, treated as property, denied a separate existence apart from men, a world without female role models to inspire the rising generations.  That was the world [the founders of our colleges] knew just a century ago.  That is the world that millions of girls and women inhabit today around the world. Little has changed in large parts of the globe.”

“Two years ago, United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan reported that there are 900 million illiterates in the world today – and 2/3 thirds of them are women.”

“Secretary Annan said, “There is no tool for development more effective that the education of girls and women.”

On Women’s Colleges

“The core values of women’s colleges are based on social justice, equality, human dignity, and ensuring the power of educated women to continue to influence society.”

“Specifically, women’s college students indicated greater gains in understanding themselves and others, general education, ability to analyze quantitative problems, and desire to contribute to the welfare of their community.”

“By establishing conditions that foster student-faculty interactions, women’s colleges appear to have provided important supports for women in fields where they are underrepresented. This is true, for example, at Sweet Briar College where 60% of its graduates obtain advanced degrees, many of them in the sciences.”

“Graduates of women’s colleges constitute more than 20% of women in Congress and are 30% of a Business Week list of rising women stars in corporate America.”

“While women currently hold almost 51% of managerial positions, they hold only about 16% of corporate officer positions, 10% of power titles such as CEO or COO, and about 5% of top earning jobs. ”

“Women’s colleges have extraordinary track records of success in teaching math and the sciences: we graduate women in these disciplines at 1½ times the rate of coeducational schools.”

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