NEWS AND INSIGHTS UPDATE:
The gender pay gap is a hot topic these days with new research results released frequently that provide statistical details about the inequality of salaries between men and women. Now, researchers from the American Association of University Women have released a study, “Graduating to a Pay Gap,” which tracks the gender pay gap across a person’s career.
The organization has been tracking the pay gap for decades, but this report marks the first time they looked at the data from the beginning of college-educated workers’ careers. Caitlin Peterkin of The Chronicle of Higher Education explains:
The results showed that, on average, men earned nearly $8,000 more than women did one year after graduating. (The figures were $42,918 for men and $35,296 for women.) The study also showed that college major is an important factor in graduates’ earnings. For example, women who majored in business earned about $38,000, while their male counterparts earned about $45,000, one year out. Such a gap was typical of all types of majors, including fields that are predominantly female, such as teaching.
The researchers also looked at how the pay gap affects the burden of repaying student-loan debt for full-time workers who graduated in 2008. They found that 53 percent of women and 39 percent of men were paying a greater percentage of their earnings toward their student-loan debt than what the researchers estimate a typical woman or man could reasonably afford to pay.
Those proportions have risen, particularly for women, over the years: In 2001 the figures were 38 percent of women and 27 percent of men.
[Christianne M. Corbett, AAUW senior researcher and co-author of the report], said the findings demonstrate how much women struggle because of the gender pay gap. “For women who take out college loans, a bigger chunk of their paycheck goes to student loans,” she said. “The numbers are really telling about how many women experience difficulty paying.”
Get the details: Male-Female Pay Gap Persists and Starts Early via chronicle.com