What Do They See?

Do you ever wonder what young women see when they look at the world now?  When we graduated college in the 1990’s (and forgive me for assuming that you are in my age range), we were headed into a completely different world.  Email was new and computers either sat on the floor or were hoisted up onto their sides next to the screen. There were pagers just for texting and cell phones for calling family in the case of an emergency. Though it does not feel like forever ago, it was still a time when the quickest transmission of information came by fax.

It was also a time, though again not long ago, when women pursued careers until they had children. Then they made the decision about whether or not to head back to work or to stay at home and raise kids.  Working from home or becoming self-employed were just not viable options then.  There were exceptions, of course, but that glass ceiling continued to loom above most of us.

Without a doubt women who choose to continue rising up that ladder are equally as amazing as those who choose to remove themselves from the workforce after having children.  Today, however, there are also a multitude of career paths that did not exist in such numbers before.  According to research by Economic Modeling Specialists International, the number of people who primarily work on their own (those who are self-employed) has risen by 1.3 million from 2001 to 10.6 million, a 14% increase.  Additionally, about 13.4 million people currently work from home in the United States, according to the Census Bureau. That is an increase of 4 million people since 1999.

I would like to think that somehow we women in social media have paved the way for the women who are graduating today, that we have carved out options and opportunities we did not have at their age and that their generation can take a step further.

So it makes me wonder what young women see when they look at the world now.  Do they see endless possibilities?  Do they see that glass ceiling or do they see up all the way to the sky?  Do they see those options and opportunities?  Do they truly believe that they can have it all?

I sure hope so.Women of endless possibilities


  1. I completely agree. I am blown by how things have evolved. I remember everything at its infancy. Will it hinder us or make us stronger? I think there are pros and cons but for the mean time, there tons of options. Working from home is a blessing!

  2. So true about how things have evolved. As a mom of a 20 year old daughter, I have worried in the past that my working only part-time didn’t show her enough of an example of a working woman or set her up for unrealistic expectations. Now that I am blogging more, I feel like it’s a good lesson on making your work situation fit your life situation. I hope she gets to enjoy the best of both worlds, family and work and I think we have the resources to make this happen.

  3. I see my students today take all different routes after graduation that I could have never even dreamed of pursuing…it is very encouraging!

  4. I look back to when I graduated and see so many more avenues for young women today.

  5. I love how today women do have so many more options. We can’t “have it all” but we definitely have the tools and opportunities to “balance it all” better.

  6. We DO have options for sure…but I think we still feel that guilt when we are trying to balance career and mommyhood…at least I DO. I have a personal shopping business that is really starting to get busy…and I have constant guilt about having a sitter for my kids…or leaving them for an entire day to work with clients. My hope is to have a boutique one day…but the main thing holding me back is my children….I know it will all work itself out…but I definitely think it is still a day to day challenge. I hope that young women today know that they do not have choose between being a mother and having a career but I also hope they realize that it is HARD and ALOT of work to “having it all”.
    Hope you have a great week….

  7. I love this post. Sometimes I am oddly sad when I think about the current generation of women when it comes to tech. They really have NO IDEA what it was like to go from no email to suddenly having all of this access. I mean THE INTERNET!! That was revolutionary for us. Now it is just a given.
    (ok. now I sound all, “get off my lawn!)
    But I guess every generation has something they take for granted. I know my Mother often talks about gender norms in the workforce that exist now that never existed when she was my age.

  8. Very true! I never imagined a career where I worked from home; I was determined to become a teacher, and spend the next 30 years in the classroom. My, how times have changed– in my mind for the better, in terms of opportunities for women and dissemination of information regarding womens’ rights on an international level as well.

  9. It’s not easy no matter what road you choose but coming out of college fresh, excited and ready to take on the world, women of today have a lot more options then we did, just as we had a lot more then our mothers did and how I hope my daughter has even more!!

  10. I am grateful that I grew up with my mom exemplifying that I could do or be anything I wanted and that I didn’t have to figure it out on anyone’s timeline but my own. The work I do fills me with joy and passion and I am glad to share that vision of what life can be for my daughter as well. Feeling empowered to follow your dreams and having wonderful role models who can show you that is it possible makes all the difference in the world.

  11. you know—Im so mired in the YOUNG YOUNG since that’s my daughters age–this is something Ive not considered much.
    and which makes me realize I need to GET OUT THERE and mentor.

  12. yes, there are so many opportunities for Women! Yay for that!!! I am excited for life after the kids become more independent and I can go do something on my bucket list

  13. I think so, yes. It seems like more women are going to college and pursuing careers before families.

  14. So true that there are opportunities now that didn’t exist then! I’m right on the cusp – I started my journalism career young so I went from writing articles on a typewriter to owning a social media business now. It’s exciting times in a lot of ways!

  15. I graduated just a wee bit earlier than you and am in awe when I think how much our world has advanced both technologically and socially. I think young women today have many wonderful opportunities available to them, but sadly there are still some things that need to be improved upon like equal wages.

  16. my mom mentored so many women in her life. it was amazing. she was a feminist before the word was defined- simply by who she was. if i can help one person as much as my mom helped anyone i’ll consider it a win

  17. I went to college for Engineering which was challenging as a female since there are so few females that go into this area, but things are continually getting better which I’m excited about.

  18. Oh gosh, I sure do hope that girls today feel they can do it all! I know my daughter has always felt that way and I raised her to reach for the stars. She’s quite ambitious and not a settler, so she’s forever striving for the next level to keep challenging herself.

  19. I remember when my college email was just a bunch of numbers and letters. Then, I graduated and aol was super popular with Instant Messaging. Everything is so connected and there are so many options for women right out of school.

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