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More Men Enter Fields Dominated by Women

New York Times (05/21/12) Shaila Dewan; Robert Gebeloff

Workplace gender patterns have shifted during the past 10 years, with more men working in jobs dominated by women, such as dental assistants, registered nurses, public school teachers, and bank tellers. Nearly 33% of job growth for men from 2000 to 2010 was in occupations that are more than 70% female, according to an analysis of U.S. Census data by the New York Times, with observers noting that these female-dominated professions have been more stable, harder to outsource, and more likely to experience growth in the near term.

Men moving into “pink-collar” jobs from 1970 to 1990 were more likely to be foreign-born, non-English speakers with little education, but Wider Opportunities senior scholar Mary Gatta and Rutgers sociologist Patricia Roos say now they tend to be young white men with college degrees. In addition to stable employment, many men say they are entering these professions because there is little stigma these days and they offer more satisfaction.