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The Intersectionality of Sex, Race, and Hispanic Origin in the STEM Workforce

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Working Paper Number SEHSD-WP2018-27

Women, Black and Hispanic workers have historically been underrepresented in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) occupations. While, White men and Asians have been overrepresented within STEM. The research into STEM occupations often does not look at the intersectionality of sex, race, and Hispanic origin. Do racial and Hispanic minority women have the same pathways into STEM as White women? This study uses the 2012-2016 5-year American Community Survey to describe the demographic and labor force characteristics of the STEM workforce and workers with science and engineering bachelor’s degrees. It examines the different occupational pathways for workers with science and engineering bachelor’s degrees, and the difference in median earnings for each potential path. Findings indicate that women across race and Hispanic origin in STEM occupations were more likely to have advanced degrees their male counterparts. There were higher proportions of Asian men and Asian women with science and engineering bachelor’s degrees that were employed in STEM occupations. Lastly, White women, Black women, and Hispanic women saw their highest median earnings in STEM occupations, but those earnings were lower than their male counterparts employed in the STEM occupations.

Page Last Revised - October 8, 2021
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