I asked Sabrina, a junior Animal Science major at Texas A&M University, a few questions about the gender wage gap in the field she wants to go into after she graduates and here is what she had to say.
Do you think Animal Science is a male-dominated major?
Yes. Well I’m not sure – the “animal science” option is predominantly women, but the “animal production” option is male.
What field do you want to go into when you graduate?
S: I want to go into Veterinary Medicine. I just have a passion for animals.
Me: Do you know if more men are accepted into vet school than women?
S: I don’t know because within the past few years more women have applied to vet school than men so it would be hard to say. But I’m pretty sure that if you are a male you have a better chance of getting in – based on gender and ethnicity you have a better chance.
Do you think the field you want to go into is dominated by men?
S: No, not anymore. It used to be, but women have risen in the industry. But I feel like the requirements for vet school have been more competitive and I feel like women are more driven to study and compete.
Me: Why do you think that is?
S: I don’t want to be sexist but I feel like once women have a set goal they strive for it. And I feel like women are dedicated to it.
If you think it is, are you worried that will have an effect on you as you enter the workforce?
N/A, I don’t think it’s dominated by men anymore.
It’s commonly said that a woman makes 79 cents to a man’s dollar. This fact can be different when analyzing other factors, but the point is that women typically make less than a man while doing the same job. Do you think that will affect you and your work?
Possibly. I feel like by the time I get a job, after vet school, that hopefully thoughts about it will change and we’ll all be equal. To be honest if I were to work in a small town where people are close minded it will still be like that, but if I go to a big city it won’t be like that.
If you were to find out that a male coworker was making more than you while doing the same job, what would you do?
I would be pissed first of all. Second of all I would talk to my boss and see if there’s something I don’t have, like honors or awards or something. But if we have the same schooling and stuff I would see if I could do anything about the pay gap. And third, if he was just like “he’s a man” and you’re a woman I would quit and go somewhere else.