Women Leave Engineering More Rapidly

Why are women engineers leaving the industry so fast?

The engineering field is facing major challenges keeping women in the work force, according to a Society of Women Engineers study presented at an October congressional briefing. The SWE Retention Study finds that one in four women who enters engineering leaves the profession after the age of 30, while only one in 10 of their male counterparts does the same.

“The numbers are very clear,“ says Dr. Lisa Frehill, executive director of Commission on Professionals in Science and Technology. “At a time when Baby Boomers are aging out of the work force, the engineering profession is facing a major retention problem with regards to women. We are losing some of our best and brightest at a time of critical need.”

The Harris Interactive survey included about 4,500 men and 1,800 women who had received an undergraduate or graduate degree in engineering.


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