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The Quest For Equilibrium Balancing A Career In Science And Engineering Academia And Family

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Conference

2002 Annual Conference

Location

Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Balancing Personal and Professional Life

Page Count

11

Page Numbers

7.1175.1 - 7.1175.11

DOI

10.18260/1-2--11152

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/11152

Download Count

36

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Paper Authors

author page

Rebecca Blust

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Abstract
NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

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Session 3475

The Quest for Equilibrium – Balancing a Career in Science and Engineering Academia and a Family

Rebecca P. Blust University of Dayton

Abstract According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, almost 64 million women, aged 16 and over are employed, representing approximately 46% of the total workforce. This number has more than doubled since 1960. In that same time period the number of workingwomen with children less than 6 years of age, has more than tripled. The number of professional women (bachelor's degrees or higher), in the civilian labor force, has increased 28% from 1992 to 1998. These numbers indicate that many women face the problems of trying to balance both a career and family. As educators, we must address that differences in gender do exist and bring the dilemmas that will face our young female students as professionals. The choice to work professionally (full-time or part-time) or to stay at home is an individual decision. Either way, these workingwomen are still full time mothers.

This paper provides findings from current studies and suggestions to mothers who want to work professionally yet seek a balance between their career and family lives. Understanding that the “super mom” theory is merely a myth, this paper will provide men and women with proven tools and experiences that will aid in their quest for both equilibrium and inner contentment as they pursue roles as mother and professional.

I. Introduction

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, almost 64 million women aged 16 and over are employed, representing approximately 46% of the total workforce. 1 This number has more than doubled since 1960. In that same time period the number of workingwomen with children less than 6 years of age, has more than tripled. Only in the past year has this trend changed. It’s been 30 years since women started swelling the number of workers, but trying to balance career and family has not gotten any easier for working women.

In academia, specifically in the science and technology fields, the number of women who pursue fulltime, tenure-track positions relative to other fields of study are astoundingly low. Working toward tenure and simultaneously trying to start or maintain a family defines the major reason that these numbers are so low. Women need support both at home and from the colleges and universities that hire them if the trend is to be reversed.

Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright ã 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Blust, R. (2002, June), The Quest For Equilibrium Balancing A Career In Science And Engineering Academia And Family Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--11152

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