Our mothers and grandmothers were sure that life is impossible without higher education – every self-respecting woman must first obtain a diploma confirming it and only then get married, give birth to children, and realize themselves in the chosen profession. Today the situation has radically changed – higher education is no longer relevant and does not belong to the value system of modern women. Why did this happen? Over the years that separate us from the youth of our mothers, not to mention grandmothers, much has changed in the world – time constantly accelerates its running and it is impossible to ignore this fact.
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Issue of Socioeconomic Status Complicating Women’s Experiences in Higher Education
Throughout recorded human history and most probably even earlier, women always had complications when it comes to access to power and/or education. Always unfairly tagged as the “weaker sex,” access and experiences to education, especially higher education is always complicated by several issues, one is socioeconomic status. Socioeconomic status is generally defined as the position of persons in society (Oxford Reference). The measurement of determining one’s socioeconomic status is often through a combination of education, income and occupation.
In most cultures, women are mostly seen as dependent on other people, family or spouse for their finances. This lack of financial independence makes it unsurprising that in a U.S. Census Bureau census of 2015, poverty rate among women is substantially above that of males (American Psychological Association). Besides actual lack of financial independence, maternal issues whether intentional or not also drive more women into poverty.
A large majority, eight out ten women have full custody of their children (American Psychological Association). This makes custodial mothers twice as likely to have lower socioeconomic status than custodial fathers. Add to this the time and effort of actually taking care of the children and the complication this add to women’s access/experience in higher education is plain to see. To conclude, a woman’s socioeconomic status, especially if she’s in the lower rungs of it further complicates her access and experience in higher education. Even in state colleges and universities, education is not totally free. An added burden is the fact that women most of the time deal with child care. The time and effort of taking care of children makes it more difficult for women to get higher education.
- “Overview socioeconomic status” Oxford Reference, Oxford University Press, 2018, http://www.oxfordreference.com/view/10.1093/oi/authority.20110803100515750
- “Women & Socioeconomic Status” American Psychological Association, American Psychological Association, 2018, http://www.apa.org/pi/ses/resources/publications/women.aspx
If you like this sample, check out also Women’s Rights Essay.