By Hayley Hewett, final year Business & Enterprise student
Recently Alison Britain has been appointed as the CEO of Lloyds Bank, she is the sixth female to be appointed as FTSE 100 CEO. The presence of women in the workplace has grown in modern years and although the pay gap still exists it seems as if equality is just around the corner …or is it?
In 2010-11, there were more female (55%) than male full-time undergraduates (45%) enrolled at university – a trend that shows no sign of shrinking. Reports have shown that boys may be the next to be the “disadvantaged” minority as girls are dominating admissions to major universities. Females are one third more likely to gain a place at a higher education institution than males, according to UCAS statistics. Shockingly in some areas of the country this figure can be as high as 50% more likely. The admission unbalance has accumulated to a 32,000 male gap over the years at universities.
If you’re a male student on campus at Liverpool Hope, Bath Spa or Cumbria University, you may be feeling a little outnumbered. These are just some of the 20 institutions where there are twice as many female full time undergraduates as there are male, according to the Higher Education Statistic Authority’s (HESA) data.
If we dive into the gender gap a little more we can see that the boys who are least likely to enter into higher education are those from poorer backgrounds. The boys that live in the poorest 20% of the country lag furthest behind their girl peers. Many of the males from poorer families choose to study vocational courses – this is likely to be because of the lack of guidance that is available to poorer communities when making university courses. However, boys from white middle-class backgrounds are also affected as this year they underachieved in their A levels based on predictions, showing that boys generally are having a tough time being accepted onto their chosen degree course.
Although the cause of this issue is unambiguous, some form of immediate action needs to take place so that the university gender gap does not ripple into the workplace. This course of action must be carefully thought out in the long term so that it does not cause discrimination to any sex.