International Women’s Day sparks discussion on shifts in gender roles
Written by Leila Scott, Photos by Jordan Petteys
Today, the world is celebrating International Women’s Day. SCAD’s student body is comprised of over 65% female students, 14% being international. Representing nearly 100 different countries, international students bring unique roles and customs to SCAD’s diverse cultural climate. We asked five female students how their roles as women have changed since moving to America and how they may shift once they begin their careers.
Daniela Aguirre, senior in industrial design, is originally from Monterrey, Mexico. “Culturally in Mexico, men do the work and the girl stays at home and cooks, so I have always had that in mind,” Aguirre said. As graduation nears for Aguirre, she discussed what the Industrial Design industry entails for women. “Industrial Design is a career that’s mostly considered for men. If I think about designers that are woman, successful, and known in the industry there are only four and that’s it,” Aguirre said.
Lina Yoo, sophomore animation student, is from South Korea. Since her move to SCAD, Yoo has experienced change when it comes to stereotyping and shaming women. Yoo explained that Korean women tend to be more conservative with their clothing and that she feels pressure to cover up in Korea. “In Korea they hate feminism, especially men. Here, there’s more support.”
Roommates Chen Wang, graduate in graphic design, Yuanyuan Long, sophomore in graphic design, and Di Lou, graduate in animation, discussed typical female roles in their cultures. “My mother is a department officer in a hospital, so she was the one who worked and my father did the housework,” Long said. The three agreed that this was a common trend for Chinese woman. “I think the role of housewife is more common in America than in China,” Wang said. Lou and Wang agreed saying, “most of the time both parents work.” Since moving to SCAD, they have felt more freedom to speak comfortably. “The topic of free speech is sensitive in China. We can’t go over certain books that discuss Chinese policy, but here if we talk about China and the professor says something that’s not right, I can correct him,” Long said. Wang followed and explained that she’s able to be honest with her professors here.
These SCAD women are just a few of the many that create unity between women with diversity. Celebrate Women’s History Month and support #BalanceforBetter. Click here for more information about International Women’s Day.