The Role Model Project for Girls

"What do you want to be when you grow up?"

How would a 9-16 year old girl answer that question?
How would she know what choices she has?

There is an overabundance of papers, studies, and speeches which illustrate a striking imbalance in how:

  • girls and boys are treated in school,
  • they are portrayed stereotypically in the media,
  • they view themselves differently with regard to career choices, and
  • these cultural stereotypes and actions translate into a wide gap in the level and pay of women and men in their professional lives.

A tremendous deficit of role models in our daily life worsens this situation, making it difficult at best for girls and young women to see a way out of this trap. This project will address the need for role models by offering an "examples" sampler of women professionals in a wide range of non-traditional careers.

The project is composed of two parts: a CD-ROM and a supporting Web site. You can also read more about how we're accomplishing this project, who is doing it, and how you can help.

The CD-ROM

The CD will be arranged to promote easy access to a database of basic information introducing between 100-200 careers, viewed in the form of a short (1-3 minutes) video of the woman professional answering four questions:

  1. What's your first name?
  2. What's your job title, and a brief description of your job?
  3. What special training or education did you need to get it?
  4. Any comments you'd like to make to girls considering your career?

Additional information about the career will also be provided in appropriate multimedia formats, including examples of the speaker's work.

The Web Site

The Web site will supplement the CD by offering additional information on the featured careers, including links to schools offering training in these areas, alternative programs, mentoring, and other means of access to these professions. Additional funding will support other creative uses of electronic communication.

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