What's holding back women - and society.
The NYT buries the lede in a report on record-high stress levels among college freshmen. Here's the third paragraph:
Every year, women had a less positive view of their emotional health than men, and that gap has widened.
Then we return to our regularly scheduled program, namely that fear of not finding a job, rising tuition and other factors that come up in every recession are stressing out freshmen, a term for which no gender-neutral term has yet been, er, conceived, it appears.
Further alone, the Times attempts to address the big story:
For many young people, serious stress starts before college...The gender gap on that question was even larger than on emotional health, with 18% of the men saying they had been frequently overwhelmed, compared with 39% of the women.
There is also a gender gap, studies have shown, in the students who seek out college mental health services, with women making up 60% or more of the clients.
'Boys are socialized not to talk about their feelings or express stress, while girls are more likely to say they're having a tough time," said Perry C. Francis, coordinator for counseling services at Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti. "Guys might go out and do something destructive, or stupid, that might include property damage. Girls act out differently.'
You could look at this as a crisis or a huge opportunity. But whichever, when half the population is over-stressed about school and life generally, that's worth urgent study. The crisis is obvious: Society is being deprived of the best talents of half the population. And the opportunity is the wealth of creativity unleashed by removing the impediments to female self-fulfillment, in academe and elsewhere.