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18th Jun 2015

Why do 48% of girls think science jobs are for boys only?

Katie Mythen-Lynch

Almost half of Irish girls believe that jobs in science, technology, engineering and maths-related (STEM) area are better suited to boys. 

While most of the students surveyed by Accenture agreed that STEM subjects could lead to a great career and high salary (80 per cent), a shocking 48 per cent believed that these careers were for their male counterparts.

According to the survey of 600 young women, teachers and parents, the problem could lie with their superiors. 78 per cent of teachers said they felt nursing and roles in the beauty and hairdressing industry appealed exclusively to girls. Tellingly, the same percentage said engineering appeals exclusively to boys.

Accenture identified a lack of female role models in STEM careers as a factor, something that could be remedied with a trip to Silicon Republic’s Inspirefest conference, which begins today in Dublin and runs until Saturday June 20, featuring a 75 per cent female line-up. Speakers include astrophysicist Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell, Mary Moloney, CEO, Coderdojo Foundation and Ariel Waldman, founder of