Nine years ago, Elizabeth Broderick, Australia’s Sex Discrimination Commissioner at the time, rang up 21 of Australia’s most powerful and influential men who held senior roles in organizations of various sizes, to ask them to use their power and influence to make a stand and create change for women in Australia. She did this after realizing through all of her travels in working for human rights, that gender discrimination is not something that can treated as just a women’s issue.
In 2010, the first group of Australia’s Male Champions of Change (MCC), started out with 10 people and has since grown to have 30 CEOs of different industries and is continuing to grow with new groups forming. These committed individuals meet four times a year and publicly commit to using their resources, abilities and roles to advance gender equity and create lasting change.
Gender inequality in STEM
In their November 2018 report, the MCC stated that women are under-represented in positions of leadership and that the gender gap is still high. Many women seem to be restricted in their careers by duties and responsibilities at home. Women currently comprise as little as 13% of undergraduates in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) and this has the potential to perpetuate the gap in the future which could lead to major issues for Australia’s economy.
The large-scale shift towards more positions available in STEM industries, including the healthcare sectors is requiring skills that are usually gender stereotyped. Having these stereotypes continue, could continue to a shortage in skilled workers to fill these roles.
Current employers can help overcome this by focusing on attracting new STEM employees by providing lifelong learning, which can help with career transitions. More emphasis on constant upgrading of employees will also allow for new talent to enter the industries. With the continued increase in technology, employees can also help decrease the gender gap by allowing employees to work with flexible hours or even remotely, thus allowing them to juggle both their careers and domestic responsibilities.
Let your child become a champion of change
The children of today are facing a world of challenges that didn’t exist just a few years ago, and will face many more that we haven’t even thought about. We need to teach them to stand up for each other, and to be educated enough to have the appropriate skills, both soft and technical, in order to be ready for their futures. STEMmates’ courses provide children with these educational tools through hands-on activity-based learning.
Through STEMmates programs, students learn analytical and teamwork skills through communication and interaction with fellow learners of all walks of life. This also has the added impact of breaking down stereotypes and about humanity.
For more information about our courses, visit our website and follow us on Facebook today and allow your child to move one step closer to becoming a champion of change for his or her future generation.