The odds of women receiving pay for a college internship are 34 per cent lower than for men, according to a new study.
“Our findings demonstrate that discrepancies by gender can occur in the college internship process as well,” said study lead author John Zilvinskis, Assistant Professor at Binghamton University in the US.
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For the study, the research team sought to find out whether women and other underserved groups were more or less likely to participate in paid or unpaid internships in college compared with their peers. They were prompted to examine this issue given that paid internships often lead to higher-paying positions post-graduation and that women continue to earn less than men for the same position despite their level of education.
Using data from a 2018 experimental itemset of the National Survey of Student Engagement, the researchers examined the relationship between student identity and academic major to the outcome of receiving payment for an internship. Of the 2,410 seniors who participated in internships, 58 per cent of men received pay during their internship, whereas only 35 per cent of women received pay. After controlling for background and major, the odds of women receiving pay for their internship were almost 34 per cent lower than for men.
“Although tremendous strides have been made for women in the workplace, we must continue to identify points of inequality,” said study author Jennifer Gillis from Binghamton University.
“Since career advising and support is everyone’s business within a university setting — not just career centres — it is important that all members directly serving students be informed of such findings to effect change,” said researcher Kelli Smith.
“Career centres can play a leading role with both pieces of training for campus staff, faculty and employer partners, and designing relevant student educational content and programming,” Smith noted. (IANS)