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Gender roles continue to evolve

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Image courtesy of ozy.com/ZY SEE BEYOND

Jennifer Cortez
Reporter

Nowadays, there is a role for every woman in this society. Not just as a wife, mother and friend, but more as a mentor and a role model. Not many people realize how much women influence our lives daily, from our female professors who teach at the Island, to the very heart of the home: our mothers, sisters, grandmothers, aunts and great aunts who we look up to. That may not be the case for some people, but, regardless women impact lives.

Dr. Diana Ivy, professor in the Communication and Media Department, is one of the many fabulous teachers on campus who has seen gender roles evolve since her college years. Ivy also offers a class called Gender Communication. As you can imagine, this class hits most of the nerve points that we do not want to talk out loud about. I highly recommend this class.

Talking to Dr. Ivy, there was a time when she faced discrimination when it was not even called discrimination.

“While I didn’t experience much overt or obvious sex/gender discrimination as an undergrad, it was the 1970s and I attended a fairly snobbish private university in my home town,” Ivy said. “It was more a situation of being judged and included or excluded based on looks, not ability. Being in a sorority made this much worse, so I always felt the values there and what “counted” for women didn’t match what I thought should count or
be emphasized.”

Changing the roles of women has not been an easy path. Events in the media today have brought light upon the subject of gender discrimination in general, not just in Hollywood, but in the office setting and school settings as well. So much change is happening. For example, there is a girl from the Houston, TX area who was crowned homecoming queen and was the star quarterback for her high school. Many stories like hers are coming to light and we can see that girl power is not just women fighting for their rights. It is showing that anything is possible, no matter what gender you are.

Destiny Pratt, junior nursing major, said she has her own definition of girl power.

“Honestly, when I hear the word girl power, I see women encouraging women,” Pratt said. “Not only that, but also by showing courage and confidence in what you do in everyday life.”

Being in nursing at the Island, Destiny explains  her point of view of how she sees the men in the
nursing field.

“About ten percent of nursing school are men,” Pratt said. “In this kind of field, many of the men may be discriminated because in the world’s view of a man, he is supposed to be strong, buff and not handling ‘women duties.’ I would have to say that anyone who has the goal of becoming a nurse, male and female, should have just as much opportunity as the next person who is passionate about nursing. This is a job for everyone. Not
just women.”

The impact of this third wave of feminism means gender roles in society continue to evolve. What does this mean? It is not the case of saying that certain jobs belong to a specific gender anymore. It is not saying to discriminate within the workplace. What it is saying is that men and women are equally alike. It is up to us, the students and faculty of Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi, to keep up the encouragement that men and women are just as competitive as the next person to get the life that we want. That starts here at the Island University with getting that bachelor’s or master’s degree.

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