Growing up, girls were told ‘you go, girl’ or ‘you can do anything you want’ and were expected to break the girly stereotypes and crash through the glass ceilings of male supremacy. While this may sound great, an alarming societal shift has begun to take its course. With this semester starting, I’ve noticed the overwhelming and alarming amount of girl to boy ratio. In almost every one of my classes, there are approximately six girls per boy, a number that is rising as each semester progresses.
In 1975, just under six million men and 3.8 million women attended a university according to Forbes magazine. However, in 1982, a sudden spike in women admissions rose to the equivalency of men peaking at just over six million. Today, more than ten million women attend a university as opposed to eight million men.
Have men fallen off the face of the higher education world? Have they decided that perhaps college isn’t necessarily for them?
In 2016, ACU announced that 57% of the general student population are women compared to the 43% of men; a 14% difference.
As the fourth wave of feminism slowly takes its toll, more and more women are taking up the books. From the early 80’s, women have been told ‘go get it’, ‘do what you love’ and ‘get an education’, but what about the men? Are they expected to follow in the footsteps of their grandfathers and other brave, educated and successful men like John F. Kennedy, Harrison Ford and Steven Spielberg?
The appearances of Oprah, Hillary Clinton and Melinda Gates continue to inspire young women to chase after big dreams, big issues, and more importantly, the big bucks. Sponsors such as Under Armor, Microsoft and Secret deodorant are pursuing women through advertisements with the same message: girl power.
And now it has come to a flip-sided dilemma. Women are becoming faster, stronger, and perhaps, further prepared for the workforce. Women no longer feel the need to have a cheerleader on the sidelines because they have exceeded the expectation.
Fewer men are attending school and this is a problem. The lack of motivation and confidence boys are receiving today is causing an epidemic. Men are perhaps no longer motivated to succeed, but simply hope for it to land on their laps.
Where are the men and when will they begin to get to work? Do they need someone to cheer and tell them ‘You. Can. Do. Anything, sweetheart’ or can they just do it themselves?
Where you at, boys? Get hustling.