Why Women in Policy?
Look around. According to NEW Leadership Oregon, women are severely underrepresented in the following institutions (just to name a few!):
Congress: Women hold only 16.8% of the 535 seats in the 112th US Congress, 17.0% of the 100 seats in the Senate, and 16.8%, of the 435 seats in the House of Representatives. (Three women serve as Delegates to the House from Guam, the Virgin Islands, and Washington, D.C.)
State Legislatures: In 2012, only 1,749 of the 7,382 state legislators in the United States were women. Women hold 428 of the 1,971 state senate seats and 1,321 of the 5,411 state house seats.
Business: In 2012, women hold only 3.8 percent of Fortune 500 CEO positions and 4.0 percent of Fortune 1000 CEO positions. 70.7% of Fortune 500 companies had no women of color serving on their boards.
Media: In 2011, women made up only 34.1% of people in the news analysts, reporters, and correspondents category, and just 23.3% of top-level management positions.
Law: In 2011, women made up 31.9% of all lawyers and were 45.4% of associates. 5% of managing partners at the country's 200 largest law firms are women.
That's why we exist.
Oregon State University’s Women in Policy student group seeks to serve as a platform for increased collaboration and education for those interested in policy topics, which span all disciplines, including social and natural sciences. The group also aims to build a diverse member base, from casually interested observers to those who are actively pursuing careers in policy-making. Central to the group is to recognize and raise awareness among members and the broader community about historical and current under-representation of women in the policy process. WIP invites both undergraduate and graduate students of any gender to contribute towards this goal. Staff/faculty and community members are also encouraged to participate.
Our goals include:
- The education of both association members and the larger community;
- Professional development and networking;
- Outreach and mentorship.
What does all that mean?
- We have great events on campus to watch films and discuss women in politics and the media.
- We have roundtable Q&A sessions with women leaders from the worlds of business, politics, science, and academia.
- We have networking and career workshops.
- We help out with awesome conferences on campus.
- We meet political leaders (like the former governor!) and get to witness a "day in the life."
- We get to know each other, build friendships and connections, and chat about current events, gender equality, and other fun things.
- Oh, and occasionally, there's free food, too.
We hope you'll stop by and check us out! We'd love to meet you!
Article of the week
Are You My Mentor? Sarah J. Robbins, Real Simple, September 2013.
Questions to ask yourself: who in your life might make a good mentor? If you don't know anyone, where might you start looking? Who might be able to help you with your search?