Female College Students Call For Recruiting Information

September 4, 2014
Editor: Arnold Hou
A female college student shows the letter which will be sent to a university. [genderwatch.cn]

To coincide with the beginning of the new semester in China's universities on September 1, 25 female college students nationwide sent a letter to 25 universities respectively, to request recruiting information, in a bid to eliminate gender discrimination in college recruiting.

Statistics show that all 25 of these universities have problems of gender discrimination in recruiting new students.

A report on gender discrimination among Project 211 universities released by Media Monitor for Women Network --- a women's rights organization --- in 2013, stated that 70 percent implement gender-based restrictions when admitting students and 34 of them directly violated the Ministry of Education's regulations on university admission that state: "Universities should not implement gender-based quotas, except for a few majors such as military, national defense and public security." The report sparked widespread public concern and some of the universities responded by saying that the quotas were necessary because of the nature of the majors, employment needs and university traditions.

Huang Yizhi, a lawyer from Beijing Ruikai Law Firm and Lv Pin, project leader at the Media Monitor for Women Network, sent a letter to the Ministry of Education in 2013, requesting information on universities and degree programs that have different admissions standards based on gender.

On August 31, 2012, three women shaved their heads in Beijing to oppose a growing trend in Chinese universities in which women increasingly must score higher than men to get in and face unofficial but widespread gender quotas that favor men.

On August 30, 2012, four other women in Guangzhou, the capital city of south China's Guangdong Province shaved their heads in public and gave the Ministry of Education a "zero" score for fairness.

In August 2013, five women sent a letter to the Ministry of Education reporting 11 top Chinese universities under Project 211 for gender discrimination against women.

In June 2014, the Ministry of Education released new regulations banning universities from recruiting students based on gender. This was the first time the ministry addressed gender in its regulations.

However, the release of the regulations has not eliminated gender discrimination in college recruiting and there is still a widespread incidence of gender discrimination. For example, majors in national defense in some institutions do not recruit females, majors in broadcasting and costume design have a limit on females' height, and some police colleges directly restrict the proportion of female students to under 15 percent.

Wu Qiang, professor of the Department of Political Science under Tsinghua University, said that the colleges' restrictions in recruitment violated the basic principle of gender equality and will worsen the problem of gender inequality in society due to the inequality in career choice in the long run.

(Source: genderwatch.cn/Translated by Women of China)

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