A new Pew Research Center study observes that more young women than young men want a successful, high-paying career, a vast contrast to the perspectives in the 1990s. According to the report which was released on Thursday, 66 percent of women between ages 18-34 said being successful and having a high paying job are very important compared to 59 percent of men the same age. But despite young women’s desire for high work success, they still also deeply desire marriage and children.
“They’re not backing away from wanting a successful marriage and wanting to be a successful parent,” Kim Parker, the associate director of Pew Social and Demographic Trends said to MSNBC. “They’re saying they want all of those things.”
These findings come in the midst of more women than men earning college degrees. Women now also make up almost half of the workforce in the US. But that is not to say that there are less men that want career success. Parker notes that the survey says nothing negatively about men. In fact, the value men place on work success has increased one percent. But more women than ever are valuing education and career success, with a 10 percent increase from 1997.
When it comes to marriage on the other hand, the importance of marriage for young men has decreased to 29 percent. Men still place high value on being a good parent, although the percentage is even higher for young women.
The study also finds that both older men and women surveyed place less value on work success. Parker admits that as these young women age, it’s unclear whether their work ambition will diminish.
“It’ll be interesting to see if this plays out for them or if they end up running into glass ceilings or too many challenges in terms of balancing work and family,” she said.