The University campus will be flooded with girls and young women on Thursday as the fifth annual Take Our Daughters to Work Day is celebrated.
All students, staff and faculty members are invited to bring their daughters or sisters between the ages of eight and 15 with them to campus on Thursday to learn more about the roles women can play in society.
Several University groups and organizations are preparing events for young women to attend. The Minnesota Women’s Center, located in Nicholson Hall, plans breakfasts in three locations, as well as speakers in the afternoon.
The afternoon session will feature speakers at a mentoring event. Men and women will discuss women’s varied roles. That event is scheduled for noon in the Mississippi Room in Coffman Memorial Union.
Other activities are planned on the Minneapolis and St. Paul campuses. The Women’s Center website lists plans for the entire day for people who want to participate in several events.
Take Our Daughters to Work Day has its roots in a Harvard study that showed that girls often did not see themselves outside of the traditional female roles of homemaker and wife as adults. The Ms. Foundation for Women decided that a day celebrating women’s accomplishments would benefit younger girls.
The University has participated in the event all five years. Jenny Ryan, a student staff member at the Women’s Center, said it is difficult to estimate how many people bring their daughters to work with them because the girls do not all go to the same events, and often stay within their parents’ departments.
Being on campus can help women decide to come to the University, Ryan said.
“This (day) can show that this campus is a place for them,” Ryan said.
Ryan said about 900 brochures have been taken from the office. Also, their website has gotten more than 200 hits, which suggests that a large number of women are considering bringing their daughters, she said.
The day is especially important for girls, Ryan said, because young boys do not have the same problems seeing themselves as a vital part of society. However, she said, school districts are encouraged to bring male role models into schools on the same day to discuss men’s social responsibilities.
Most school districts let girls take the day off from school, but they often have to prove that they attended a Take Our Daughters to Work Day activity, Ryan said. Each school district has a different policy for parents to look into, she added.