Riverside Community College District colleges will hold a Nontraditional Employment for Women Conference (NEW) on December 6 at Riverside City College, beginning at 9 am. The event is designed to encourage women to consider careers in CTE fields.
The colleges expect 200 high school students from five local high schools to attend the NEW career-exploration event. Students will experience a hands-on, interactive, day of career exploration. Ten programs will be featured: Cyber Security; Applied Digital Media; Automotive; Air Conditioning; Film, Television & Video; Welding; Crime Scene Investigation; Public Safety Education and Training; Emergency Medical Services; and Fire Technology.
According to a recent U.S. Department of Education report, students who attend public colleges and graduate from career training programs tend to land better paying jobs than those who attended for-profit schools. Data from the Department of Education showed that on average students who earned certificates from public colleges earned nearly $9,000 more than graduates from for-profit institutions. Education Secretary John B. King, Jr. commented in the report that earnings information is an important thing for students to pay attention to as they decide what programs to pursue.
"College is the best investment a person can make in their long-term future," he added.
A national study by the the Institute for Women’s Policy Research and Wider Opportunities for Women (IWPR) in March 2013 revealed women are sorely underrepresented in CTE fields. Fewer than one in six students nationally are studying construction-related CTE programs, and fewer than one in 10 students in transportation, distribution and logistics are women. Conversely, women comprise 80 percent of students enrolled in human services CTE programs, which lead to lower-paying positions.
A recent IWPR study concluded that more than one in four employed women in the United States are concentrated in low-wage “women’s work,” such as teaching young children, cleaning, serving, and caring for elders — jobs that are done primarily by women, but pay less than $15 per hour and provide few benefits.
Barbara Gault, Ph.D., IWPR vice president and executive director, says that policy must address the continuing stark segregation of women, and especially women of color, into jobs that are underpaid for their skill levels, despite being crucial to our nation’s economy. Improving the quality of these low-wage jobs, and creating pathways to stable careers, is a critical part of strengthening our nation’s infrastructure.
Individuals interested in attending the event can contact Al Cardoza, projects specialist, Career & Technical Education, at (951) 222-8380 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.