Fordham professor, student research college wage gaps

shutterstock_226347607A gender pay gap averaging almost 30 percent exists between men and women who attended colleges with religious affiliations, according to a study conducted by a Fordham University professor and graduate student.

The figures, contained in a recently released U.S. Department of Education College Scorecard, and studied by Assistant Professor Chaitra H. Nagaraja and graduate student Jane E. Boon, showed that at one university with a religious affiliation, Brigham Young University – Idaho, the pay gap reached 155 percent.

The wage figures are calculated 10 years after a student’s enrollment at a four-year college, a point in time at which a career is assumed to be well established.

Jane E. Boon

Jane E. Boon

Chaitra H. Nagaraja

Chaitra H. Nagaraja

“Just as the selection of majors certainly influences men’s and women’s salaries, the size and persistence of these large gaps is hard to ignore and may speak to something about the students who choose to attend one of these schools,” Boon and Nagaraja wrote in an article posted on the Time magazine website.

Students at Catholic universities are not immune to the wage gap, Nagaraja and Boon found, but the salaries of those who attended large Catholic colleges are higher for both men and women. For example, the wage gap at Georgetown University is 39 percent, but women make an average of $93,800 while men make $130,700. At Fordham, the gap is 37 percent, with women making $57,300 and men making $78,700.

“Women who attended the largest Catholic schools earn, on average, very good wages,” Nagaraja and Boon wrote.

There are 36 colleges where women out-earn men, the two also found.

“They have higher than average representation of African Americans, and strong nursing programs that are still more attractive to talented young women than to men,” Nagaraja and Boon wrote.

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