Asee peer logo

Women in Industrial Distribution: Emerging Opportunities and Challenges for Female College Graduates

Download Paper |


2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


New Orleans, Louisiana

Publication Date

June 26, 2016

Start Date

June 26, 2016

End Date

August 28, 2016





Conference Session

Women in Engineering Division Technical Session - Development Opportunities for Diverse Engineering Students

Tagged Divisions

Minorities in Engineering and Women in Engineering

Tagged Topics

Diversity and ASEE Diversity Committee

Page Count




Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Allie Copeland Texas A&M University

visit author page

Allie Copeland is the Vice President of Operations at Standard Supply & Distributing Inc., an independent privately owned industrial distributor of heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and related products. Allie has an Bachelor of Science in Organizational Leadership from Pennsylvania State University and is currently pursing a Masters of Industrial Distribution from Texas A&M University in College Station, TX.

visit author page


Malini Natarajarathinam Texas A&M University Orcid 16x16

visit author page

Dr. Malini Natarajarathinam is an Associate professor with Department of Engineering Technology and Industrial Distribution. She teaches classes on strategic relationships for industrial distribution, distribution information systems and new directions in Industrial Distribution. She is also the founding faculty and advisor for the Society of Women in Industrial Distribution (SWID). She works on many service learning projects with her students where they work with many local community agencies.

visit author page

Download Paper |


Industrial Distribution is a multi-billion dollar industry domestically. An issue within the industrial distribution industry is a relatively disproportionate number of male to female workers; less than 25% of the employed workforce is made up of female employees. This ratio is disparate from US total female workforce participation of 57% (DOL, 2015). The purpose of this study is to understand male and female perceptions from industry professionals as it relates to female gender challenges and opportunities within Industrial Distribution. A survey instrument was used across a variety of Industrial Distribution trade verticals to provide qualitative data. Analysis of the research data generated by the survey is designed to contribute to a collective understanding of opportunities and challenges that exist for females currently engaged in or looking to approach a career in industrial distribution.

Copeland, A., & Natarajarathinam, M. (2016, June), Women in Industrial Distribution: Emerging Opportunities and Challenges for Female College Graduates Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.27207

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2016 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015