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Sarah Hoops

UWRT 1102-040

Topic Proposal

My broader topic for my topic proposal is revolved around woman in STEM careers and

majors. STEM stands for science technology engineering and mathematics. The question I came

up with for this topic was: Why is there such a shortage in woman going into STEM related

careers? As I continued researching it made me think about different ways to go about discussing

this topic. There are multiple views but the two I was focused on including were pay gaps and

gender equality in the work place. A different question that arises from the research I have done

is why are woman turned away from careers and majors in STEM? This question is the most

important I feel in my topic, therefore this will be what my main focus will go to.

This topic interested/relates to me because I am majoring in Civil Engineering and I have

a minor in Mathematics. This involves me in the category of woman in STEM majors. As I go

through my engineering classes I often feel like an outsider. I am one of the two females in my

intro to engineering course. This is just the first out of many engineering courses I have to go and

there is only one other woman there with me. This can be very intimidating to most women

because they could easily feel out of place in this major. It is common for woman in engineering

to feel in-superior or overlooked by the males in the field. When I do show my accomplishments

in the class, or have circumstances where I know more than the males in the room I am almost

shocked. Being shocked is not a good reaction to have because I should be equal to the males

going into the class, I should not have to prove my knowledge and my skills. There is this barrier

people set making engineering seem like a job for men because STEM is generally male

dominated. After talking to a lot of my friends and other people I have met about engineering I

am surprised by the number of woman that are truly not interest in a STEM career. When I even
Sarah Hoops
UWRT 1102-040
mention the number of math classes I have to take there is an automatic disconnect from even

thinking about majoring in engineering. Just like any class science related courses are just as

manageable as any other if you are determined enough to succeed. I believe I am different from

the majority because I like the challenge of doing something not everybody thinks they can. I

have stepped away from thinking I cannot be a civil engineer because it is a male dominated

job and I have changed my mind set to if a man can do this, I can do this. I think this is

important for woman of all ages to think about. We should not close our minds to a STEM

related job just because women do not normally go into them. We should take that and say more

woman should try going into STEM related careers. Especially in college, woman should not be

afraid to go into STEM related jobs. There needs to be a bigger pull to get woman in, instead of

intimidating woman and pushing them in the opposite direction.

The article I chose was called STEM like a woman. When I saw this article I could not

help but be intrigued by the title. The article jumps right into talking about woman and minorities

being a shortage in STEM majors and programs. The STEM workforce has updated there

program goals to include helping to break stereotypes within education and social spheres, and

most importantly, changing the approach to closing the gender gap. (Jezierska, 2016) This

article is all about motivating woman to persevere and follow their chosen path instead of

backing down because they do not feel as though they belong in this male dominated world

(Jezierska, 2016). It then discusses personal experiences woman have had and gives you a

firsthand view on how they got through the struggles they have faced.

This article is very relevant to the topic of supporting woman in STEM careers and fields.

STEM like a women showed that woman in STEM careers are part of the minority. The article
Sarah Hoops
UWRT 1102-040
aimed to support females in STEM and encouraged something to be done to change the divide.

Careers should not have any stereotypes associated, anyone should be able to do any career they

would like without feeling out of place or feel like they do not belong. Recognizing there is a

problem is the first step towards changing the problem, this emphasizes the importance of letting

woman know what STEM is.

This discussion fits perfectly into current discussions of woman STEM. I know that

engineering jobs are always looking to hire females and getting females more interested in

STEM related fields early on. In high school I was in ACE mentoring which stood for

Architecture Construction and Engineering. I was the only female in this club at my high school

and that stood out to the woman in charge. I gave a speech to the school talking about what ACE

has done for me and how it has increased my interest in engineering. After the speech I had many

girls come up to me and ask how to get involved and more of my personal experience. After I

gave my speech the Vice Principle asked if I would like to go to an engineering board meeting

with her to get more involved. This shows there is a push to get females interested especially at

an early age. The schools want to help woman get involved as much as they can and this is

important that they are helping to get this subject introduced.

Sarah Hoops
UWRT 1102-040

Reference Page

Jezierska, Joanna. STEM LIKE A WOMAN. Proquest, ProQuest LLC, Nov.-Dec. 2016. Web,

14 Feb. 2017.