Graduation & The Glass Ceiling

Graduation and the Glass Ceiling:

Female College Students Lack Confidence in their Career Prospects

Monster today announced the findings of a recent survey that reveals gender disparities in confidence and perceived earning ability among those in college and college graduates in the early phase of their careers.

While 81% of respondents currently enrolled in college report feeling at least somewhat confident in securing a job after graduation, only 16% of women feel “absolutely confident,” compared to 27% of men.

Results also showed a gender gap in the perceived ability to find a high-paying job, with 48% of men enrolled in college believing their first job salary will exceed $50,000 compared to just 33% of women.

“The longstanding gender gap in career opportunity persists, and is even appearing before female students graduate,” says Monster Senior Vice President of Global Market Insights, Joanie Courtney. “Today’s female college grad should have just as much confidence as men in planning and managing their career paths, it’s clear they don’t. While there is more opportunity and gender equality in the workplace than ever before, there is room for improvement.”

The Monster survey also found a distinct gender gap in the perceived importance of college degrees. For women, the value of a degree decreased with experience and time; for men, however, it remained stable or increased. When college students were asked how important their degree would be to the success of their career, 82% said it would be important. In contrast, only 62% of female college graduates said their college degree has been important to their careers.

According to the survey, 83% of male students compared to 74% of female students say they are prepared to start their college career; when college graduates were asked how prepared college made them for their career, males reported slightly higher rates (88%) and females views were stable (76%) compared to college students.

The survey was conducted by Survey Sampling International on behalf of Monster in April 2015 to a nationally representative sample of nearly 1,500 individuals aged 18-34 in three segments: one-third currently in college (502), one-third out of college less than five years (498), and one-third out of college over five years (497).

For more information visit

Leave A Comment