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Why We Stereotype Engineering?
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“Engineering is a boy’s thing”; how many times, we Indians have said or heard this from the people around us? Stereotyping has become a thing of everyday. Mainstream norms that have been doing the rounds since forever has taken center stage, and steering ourselves away from these thoughts and views is necessary, if nothing else.
How many times have we made fun of boys pursuing mechanical engineering with the comment that they will never get a girlfriend? How many times have we passed sexist comments and misogynist looks at the few girls who do end up doing mechanical engineering? How difficult it is to understand that these thoughts are autorythmic in nature. They are self driven; the common belief that girls don’t venture into certain branches of engineering has become the reason why girls actually don’t pursue these courses. When human beings were created by the supreme deity, he made men and women different only anatomically; our facial features are different, our abilities are not.
Why then, is it that we stereotype practically every facet of engineering, making it an issue of patriarchy and the requirement of feminism is profound, when it is nothing but a professional course that somewhat ensures employment in the future? Probably because we do not understand engineering at all, or maybe, we don’t understand that creating, building and making things are as much the job of a woman, like caring and nurturing is the job of man. Since centuries, we have made sure that we try to teach our youngsters that a woman doing physical work like a man is abnormal and absurd. We have inculcated in the minds of our sons that men are not supposed to do things that involves being soft and sensitive. These gender norms have showed the way we think about education as well. http://jmit.ac.in/
Engineering, a course that spells excellence and progress should never be tarnished by the way we think and act in our daily lives. When the world is fighting for equal opportunities and a chance to prove themselves for women, it is necessary to understand that we need to give them an option of education as well. The freedom to make a choice is more important that the choice we actually make; the choice, if and when is engineering, should be pursued with panache. Engineering gives an insight to how things work. How they turn out to be, and how they were supposed to be. The joy of creating sketches of things and actually making them, seeing your ideas unfold, in the form of solid structures, is a great joy in itself. Everyone deserves to witness and enjoy this experience, even If she is supposedly ‘physically weak’.
Although some fields (such as Finance) might not be related to engineering, these sectors are increasingly seeking engineers to fill up their vacancies. It goes without saying that engineers can create a lot of value in different sectors. By their very educational procedure, they undergo intensive training that enables them to dig deep into the roots of all problems to find out complex issues, and applying the knowledge of engineering to arrive at practical solutions. Engineers have a wonderful capability to comprehend individual components of a particular system, and the manner in which these components function within a bigger system in the organization. This is one of the primary reasons why engineering grads are preferred in a number of sectors involving finance and policy development (such as the banking sector), in spite of the fact that these are non-engineering domains. In such sectors, an engineer’s training in problem-solving, numerical and analytical skill is largely appreciated.
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