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guys (still) kick ass – part 1


Economic projections

Rosin writes that, “Of the 15 job categories projected to grow the most in the next decade in the U.S., all but two are occupied primarily by women. …

Men dominate just two of the 15 job categories projected to grow the most over the next decade: janitor and computer engineer. Women have everything else — nursing, home health assistance, child care, food preparation. Many of the new jobs, says Heather Boushey of the Center for American Progress, “replace the things that women used to do in the home for free.” None is especially high-paying. But the steady accumulation of these jobs adds up to an economy that, for the working class, has become more amenable to women than to men.

This is a statistic that has echoed around the web — googling it I got nearly 7,000 hits — but it wasn’t true when Rosin wrote it, and it isn’t true now.

There are two ways to look at job growth, of course: by percent or numerically. But in either case, the Bureau of Labor Statistics figures don’t show what Rosin says they do. The 15 professions expected to grow the most from 2008-’18 by total openings included the male-dominated fields of construction laborers, heavy truck drivers and landscaping and grounds keeping workers. Men also dominate several fields in the top 15 by percentage growth, including biomedical engineers, network systems and data communications analysts and computer software engineers.

On Feb. 1, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released their new biannual projections, for 2010-2020. The 15 professions now expected to grow the most numerically include the male-dominated fields of heavy truck driver, laborer and postsecondary teacher (54.1 percent male). Women do predominate among the ranks of customer service reps, food service workers and retail salespersons, and do dominate some of the other professions, involving health care and child care. Percentage-wise, the 15 fastest-growing professions include biomedical engineers, brickmason helpers, carpenter helpers, iron and rebar workers and glaziers.

More importantly — why look at just the top 15 professions? The BLS lists the top 30. Also, the 15 professions expected to grow the most are expected to generate just 6.3 million of the 20.5 million new jobs expected by 2020.

It’s also worth noting that according to the BLS, more than half — 61.6 percent — of the 54.8 million million total openings expected by 2020 will come from the need to replace workers who retire or permanently leave a profession. So, according to BLS, “even occupations that are projected to experience slower-than-average growth or to decline in employment still may offer many job openings.”

For example, mining is an industry in decline — yet it still offers some really phenomenal job opportunities.

Basically this is a not a statistic that should worry men or said to presage our downfall.

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