Although female entrepreneurship is growing, women continue to face many challenges compared to their male counterparts

Written by Justin Morris and Nate Zumbach [Row 4]

Gone are the days of patriarchal dominance in business. Today women are gaining a foothold in all fields of business, commerce, and entrepreneurship. American express commissioned a 2014 report which found that more than 9.1 businesses are operated by women in America.
A greater female presence is good news for the economy as a whole. Susan Duffy is the executive director of the center for women’s entrepreneurial leadership at Babson College.

She believes that “Entrepreneurship is a central path to job creation and economic growth,” and “this is, in large part, because they are starting from behind so they are playing catch up.”

Female engagement in entrepreneurship and business is growing in part to college promotions

The number of women-owned businesses has increased 68 percent in the last seventeen years. The increased participation is in part to greater self empowerment, and a change in the cultural landscape.

Programs like the Department of Women's Studies at the University of Maryland are working to promote female engagement in business. The department hosted, self-starter and CEO of S’well, Sarah Kauss to inspire female students to follow their passion. [LINK]

Kauss’ urged the necessity for women to take risks in order to be successful.

“I had to let go of always trying to do things perfectly, and if I kept back until it was ready, it would never have been ready, or someone else would’ve done it first,” Kauss said.

Although women are taking a larger role in entrepreneurship they continue to face many challenges

Since the 1990's colleges have experienced less women pursuing bachelor degrees in business. According to Expanding Opportunities for Women in Business only 48 percent of women earn bachelor degrees in business.  Women deal with many challenges and factors pursuing a business profession.  

Women are less satisfied with their business professions than men are which makes this a reason why women do not pursue business degrees. Men are more likely to be satisfied with their opportunities for career growth and development. This thought relates back to The Diamondback article where Sarah Kauss talks about how she was not satisfied with her position as an accountant. She felt that she was mistreated and that she was not respected in her work place. 

“I overcompensated with educating myself, so I could own the room, and I didn’t want some engineer coming up to me and telling me something about my building I didn’t already know," Kauss said.

According to the Top-Twenty Business Schools by U.S. News and World Report in 2015, only 35 percent of full-time students were females. Another factor that contributes to women experiencing challenges pursuing entrepreneurship in college is stereotype threat. 

When women are aware of stereotypes regarding their gender it ultimately decreases their p
erformance. In business school, students must take advanced math courses. Women have had less confidence with their math skills in business schools because they lack the confidence that they can do well because they are aware of the stereotype threat that women are not as good at math as men.

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