West Point Women: A Natural Pattern Or A Camouflage Ceiling?

Discussion in 'Academy/Military News' started by MemberLG, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    From NPR

    West Point Women: A Natural Pattern Or A Camouflage Ceiling?

    http://www.npr.org/2013/10/22/239260015/west-point-women-a-natural-pattern-or-a-camouflage-ceiling

    Some interesting remarks

    I give my two cents, it's a natural pattern. Not enough female applicants. According the USMA Board of Visitor June 2012 meeting notes, from 2008 - 2012, appointment offers to qualified females have been higher than to qualified males. The "goal" helps females, not hurt them.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2013
  2. MedB

    MedB Parent

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    Thanks for posting this, LG. I heard the story on the way in this morning and vowed to post it as well.

    The piece came directly on the heels of a story about the dozen (remaining) female marines that are undergoing infantry training right now as part of an experiment to see how women would fair in combat roles. And from the first moments this SA story was "slanted" at best.

    The basic premise was that there was a glass ceiling and cap on the percentage of women admitted to WestPoint, and that lingering injustice needed to be eradicated. The problem is, the facts don't seem to fit the premise...

    When it comes to SAs, we are talking about some of the most selective college opportunities in the entire nation. And already, women are admitted a much higher rate than men in terms of acceptance rate vs applications. If anything, one could argue that if women have an easier time getting admitted, does that mean the standards are being lowered to futher the diversity goal? But instead this NPR story painted WestPoint as behind the times, stuck in an old-boys-club mentality of tradition, and barely keeping up with the 80s.... let alone tomorrow.

    Should the SAs continue to stress diversity in order to build an officer corps that is reflective of the overall military. Of course! But instead of celebrating the strides made and the success of female cadets/officers, the piece painted WestPoint (and by extension, the military) as behind the times and repressive of women. Sad...
     
  3. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Thanks for posting LG. Having read the article I see no way admissions could be gender blind. The CFA will tell all... or we'll be recruiting some inadequate men. I agree that the 16% is a natural ceiling.

    I've no problem with women in the military in any role, as long as they can meet the requirements of that role.
     
  4. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    Interesting topic. I am a believer that as long as women can hack it without a drop in standards then let them serve in what ever role they are qualified for. I would hate to see West Point drop the standard to increase the number of females just to think they are getting rid of some "ceiling". I suppose this means West Point is deciding to focus its recruiting efforts and budget (I am not talking athletic recruiting) on increasing the number of female applicants? I am assuming this means they believe they will see a proportional increase in qualified female applicants also. This is sort of like what the SEALs did/do to increase their numbers a few years ago. They targeted alot of college athletic events such as wrestling meets, water polo matches and swim meets. They targeted a demographic that they believed could meet their physical/mental requirements and values to increase qualified applicants.
     
  5. parentalunit2

    parentalunit2 Parent

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    A very long time ago I was employed as a tour guide at West Point. Part of the official shtick was to mention that the corps is 16% female to keep in line with the 16% of females in the army. As if that number would never, ever change. It didn’t make sense to me 25 years ago, and it still does not make sense to me today.
     
  6. NorwichDad

    NorwichDad Member

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    +1 I agree
     
  7. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    I have been accused of not thinking outside the box, but not sure even with significant increase in the budget and manpower how the admissions office can increase the number of female applicants. The budget is a secondary issue as with only two full time military admissions officer per regions, they can't be on the road all the time to recruit. FFRs are volunteers so the admissions office can ask us to do something, but can't force us to get in touch with female applicants. Even if there are additional full time manpower, they will have hard time reaching out to female applicants. How do you reach out to make a difference? Email or phone call, perhaps, not effective.

    My experience with female applicants is that either they want to attend West Point or simple no. Just represented West Point at a college fair. A female student and her mother walked by my table. The girl made a comment something along the line that West Point is not for her as she can't follow all the rules at West Point. So I asked her how do you know? Her answer was she has friends in JROTC and they tell her things. So, I made my sales pitch -JROTC is not West Point, what you see in the movies are not the real military, how can you say you can't do something without even trying? She politely nodded her head and walked away. I get same responses from boys too. I am pretty sure I didn't change her mind, but if someone that has been doing this for 10+ year can't convince someone to consider West Point, either I need to stop or perhaps it's an impossible task.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2013
  8. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    I think the vast majority of folks already have their mind made up about the military one way or the other, let alone attending an Academy. My 10 year old nephew was visiting this weekend, and my son was home as well. The 10 year old loves my son to death and really looks up to him. I asked him, half as jest, so maybe it colored the answer, if he was going to join the Navy or the Army. He was quite emphatic, "None of them".
     
  9. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

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    Kinnem,

    How many cookies did you give him for that answer? Sir, have you no shame?
     
  10. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Hey! I was disappointed! Thought he might at least show a little curiosity about serving! Can't start on 'em too young! :eek:
     

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