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Young Women, Education, and Employment

  • Marisa DiNatale
  • Stephanie Boraas

Abstract

The dramatic increase in young women’s educational attainment levels over the last 25 years and their growing presence in the workforce have changed the employment landscape and the meaning of what it is to be a woman age 25–34 today. Faced with opportunities not available to their counterparts in 1975, young women today are more likely to be in the labor force. They also have made significant headway in attaining higher-paying executive, managerial, and professional positions and in closing the earnings gap with men. Yet young women work more hours than they did a generation ago, and they continue to be disproportionately represented in such traditional “women’s” occupations as kindergarten teachers and librarians. Key findings from this chapter include:
  • About three-quarters of women age 25–34 were in the labor force in the year 2000, compared with a little over half in 1975.

  • Young women today are more highly educated than their counterparts were in 1975. In 2000, 30 percent of women age 25–34 had completed four or more years of college, compared with 18 percent 25 years earlier.

  • Young women have substantially closed the earnings gap with their male counterparts since 1979 (the first year for which comparable earnings data are available from the Current Population Survey). They earned 82 percent as much as young men in 2000 for full-time work, compared with 68 percent in 1979.

Keywords

Labor Force Black Woman Hispanic Woman Current Population Survey Pension Plan 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Women’s Research and Education Institute 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marisa DiNatale
  • Stephanie Boraas

There are no affiliations available

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