By Nikita Verma, Donut Ignore Sexism
I’m part of the new generation. The generation where the wage gap is no longer a problem. The generation where there is an equal number of male and female bosses. The generation where females are not discriminated against in the workforce. Right? Wrong.
Contrary to what many people think, there is still a large disparity between men and women in the workforce. Even in today’s society, men are hired over women with equal qualifications, especially in STEM fields.1
But how early does this trend start? When do girls start being left behind vocationally? As it turns out, it is pretty early.
In my high school itself, there are no girls in leadership positions in Robotics Club, Robotics Club, or the Quiz Bowl team and girls are largely outnumbered on the Forensics Team and Model UN. If girls are already left behind in high school, imagine the implications this has in the workforce. In efforts to change the way my peers, and ultimately my generation, considered gender, I decided to have a bake sale, where boys had to pay $1 for a donut whereas girls only had to pay $0.75.
I primarily wanted to see the reactions of my classmates; would they be outraged, elated, or completely indifferent. Although some said that my sale “just made up for the discrimination”, most people were on the side of confusion and irritation. When I explained the purpose of this
bake sale/social experiment, people showed a general lack of knowledge regarding the challenges that women face in the workforce. So I started an organization called Donut Ignore Sexism, where I spread awareness of these struggles through social media. My main goal for this organization is to get the conversation started, get people thinking about this on a daily basis.
The only way to incite a larger change and to ensure that women receive equal education, resources, and opportunity is to get support from more people—both men and women. In fact, less than a quarter of Americans openly admit to identifying as a feminist.2 So speak out. Whether it’s through a controversial bake sale, a blog, or even bringing it
up during family dinner, the more conversations we have regarding the disparity, the larger movement we will incite. We need to raise the next generation to stop treating gender as a resume booster or destroyer.
For more information on my project, how to get involved, or the challenges that women face in today’s society, check out Donut Ignore Sexism’s facebook page.