Trekking down a paved path: Education for Women
Do you have women in your family who have gone to college? What about any doctors, lawyers or other ceiling busting women? If so, you have Representative Patsy Takemoto Mink to thank.
Fifty-one years ago, Rep. Mink authored a bill and got Congress to pass this landmark piece of legislation. The Title IX of Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender in educational institutions and programs that receive federal funding.
This legislation was groundbreaking for a number of reasons. For the first time women were entitled to an equal education on every level. No more could colleges turn away women from entering particular programs of study!
It also paved the way for sex equity in school sports and other school sponsored extracurricular activities.
Ultimately, The bill was renamed the Patsy Takemoto Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act in 2002 to honor her contributions to civil rights, and economic and social justice.
An interview with Rep. Mink in 2002 shared her personal motivations for authoring the bill.
“I have a very personal connection with Title IX because while I was wanting to go to medical school and I had written to a dozen or more medical schools to seek entry, each one of them turned me down by saying that they did not admit women to their schools. It came to me as quite a shock that in America it was not a person’s grade, aptitude, tests, recommendations that got the person into the careers of their choice, but that it had to do with one’s gender.”
Luckily, we have come far from those ceiling-inhibiting days. What is something you’re grateful you were able to accomplish as a woman in your lifetime that your mother could not?