Rich Van Wyk/Education Report
October 20, 2005
The number of women on college campuses, quietly increasing for decades, has reached a point students can't help but notice.
Kristen Barnes is a journalism major at Indiana University/Purdue University at Indianapolis. "Out of like maybe 40 people, five are guys. Everyone else is girls."
And in Megan Bateman's political science class, "It was surprising. It was mostly all girls. There were a few guys, but it was a lot of girls."
Even in the male bastion of business, Crystal Johnfauno found "My honors class has more women it it than men."
On the IUPUI campus 57 percent of the students are women. Nearly 200,000 women attended Indiana's state colleges last year, 25,000 more than in 1999. They represent 55 percent of the public university enrollment.
As college enrollments rise across the country, women are increasing their numbers nearly twice as fast as men.
Administrators watching the so-called college gender gap see problems rooted in middle schools and high schools.
IUPUI Director of Enrollment Services Dr. Rebecca Porter says the school is "concerned when we look at high school graduation rates and preparing students to be successful, we're seeing differences in the qualifications and in the interests in students based on gender."
In fact, the differences in the high school dropout rates of men and women are as surprising as the differences between men and women in college.