Saturday 09 2024

Celebrating Women in Academia During Women’s History Month

by Leah Jackson

Female professor teaching class - Yuri A/ Shutterstock

Women's History Month is a time to celebrate the incredible achievements that women all over the world have made (and continue to make).

Particularly in academia, it's a reminder to reflect on the evolution of women's access to (and role in) higher education -- and to initiate conversations about how to maintain progress.

Today, women outnumber men in the U.S. college-educated labor force, according to Pew Research, but this is a product of centuries' worth of work to gain access. Before the 19th century, women were largely deterred from pursuing higher education.

Many early women's colleges started as seminaries for the sole purpose of educating women to become teachers. According to the Women's College Coalition, the earliest women's colleges were founded in the mid-19th century.

Taking it a step further, what about women working in higher education? Cornell professor of German and history Harriette J. Cooke is believed to be the first female professor given pay equal to her male colleagues (in 1871). Today, according to research from the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR), women maintain a majority presence in administrative positions, but they are over-represented among the lowest-paying and lowest-ranking faculty positions.

While there is still much work to be done, women advocates abound on college campuses across the country and continue to spark important conversations about how to achieve equity. We are proud to continue the conversation here on HigherEdJobs. This Women's History Month, please enjoy this roundup of some of our favorite articles published on HigherEdJobs over the years about women in the workplace and the academy.

Are Women's Colleges Still Important Today?

Empowering Women in Higher Education: Lessons Learned

The Truth about Women's History from a Women's Studies Pioneer

Can You Really Have It All? Women Today Say Yes

Leveling the Playing Field for Women in Negotiations

Five Practices to Support Mothers in the Workplace

Creating Equity in the Workplace


This article is republished from HigherEdJobs® under a Creative Commons license.