Girls Tell Us How to Smash Stereotypes

Girls Tell Us How to Smash Stereotypes

Students at a Modern Muse Workshop at Credit Suisse

We recently ran a session at ‘The Credit Suisse Modern Muse Week in the Life’ work-experience event. This is a fantastic week long event that brought together 30 girls from diverse backgrounds and ages ranging from 15 to 17.

The girls were invited into the Credit Suisse office to discover what a career in a financial institution would be like. 40 amazing volunteers from Credit Suisse took time out of their busy weeks to run this incredible event.

At the end of the week, the students presented, in teams, what they’d learnt during the week. This took place in a large auditorium, a daunting task even for the seasoned presenter. The presentations were outstanding, the students were confident, articulate and creative.

In true Modern Muse style, the students also actively embraced the concept and importance of networking, a theme which persisted throughout the week.

During our session, which we ran with Yasmin a recent graduate, we asked the girls to tell us why they think many girls choose stereotypical careers. Responses included: There are more stereotypical role models | No exposure to senior role models| Considered more achievable, there’s a fear of failure | Society taught us, you stick to what you know and you fit a certain role | More support if you stick to stereotypes-you feel judged if you don’t| Parents in more traditional jobs| These are the jobs that are available| Perceived lack of flexibility.

This is how they’d change the situation: Reduce the idea that jobs are gendered, promote men in stereo-typically feminine roles | More role model representation on TV | Get companies to engage with mediums young people use (Instagram), blend fashion promos with career opportunities | Resources for teachers | Government to promote companies like Modern Muse | Spread the word to younger girls| Promote shared parental leave | Equity & equality.

Stereotypes need to be smashed, role models elevated and leadership skills built early on, that’s why I’m determined to get Modern Muse to more schools and get more Girls to share the Modern Muse Platform with their friends.

A huge thanks to our partner Credit Suisse and our wonderful Muses Audrey Bampoe and Gurpreet Chung for running this brilliant event.

Please contact me at donna@modernmuse.org to find out how you can get involved in our Girls Leadership Programme.