On college campuses, a gender gap in student government - The Washington Post

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Posted by Mary Smith

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Mary Smith
by Mary Smith - Mar. 22, 2011

This article grounds student government by presenting the gender gap,-- or the lower involvement of females in student government than males--and keeping the forms of leadership on college campuses in question. This topic is super interesting, and as the author states, "...precise figures were unavailable," with respect to the percent of female student government presidents at four-year colleges. One reason for the insignificance of not having these precise figures may be that, "...women gravitate to leadership of clubs or causes more in line with their career goals instead of jumpint into what they might view as a boys club." Who is to say that being the editor in chief of the school newspaper is any less diplomatic, any less managerial than that of the student government president-- of course varying from institution to institution. On the contrast, women's advocay organizations site the lack of women in leadership roles, specifically in student goverment, as reflective of the trends of female involvement/election in national politics. It is not that women do not know how to be leaders, or do not take leadership roles, but that somehow being involved in student "government" maintains a more regal leadership appeal than other leadership roles. Without saying as much of course! It would be enlightening to hear about female involvement in schools across the country--not just in the Washington D.C. area.

“People who track student government say the gender gap is often reinforced by fraternities that vote en masse for male candidates.” “But women seem less enthusiastic about a student government that some critics say is too preoccupied with minutiae of bylaws and election rules.” "Advocates of the student government counter that it is the first place administrators and trustees turn for student input. "

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