Jobs Women Do, Jobs Men Do

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Because the government tracks the race and gender of new hires for to inform the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission,  we know all sorts of fun facts about who does what kinds of jobs in America.

For instance, the most common job for women still in 2010, as it was in 1970, is secretary (or administrative assistant, as they’re usually called these days). There were about 3.8 million female secretaries nationwide at the end of the last decade.

The second most common job for women is cashiers, at 2.8 million, and then elementary and middle school teachers, at 2.7 million.

The most common job for men: truck drivers, with 3.2 million. The most common job for whites is secretary, with 3 million. For blacks, nursing aides and home health care aides, at 731,000. The most common job for Hispanics was construction laborer, though those numbers have likely fallen since the survey.

While none of those jobs require advanced education, the most common job for Asian-Americans usually does: computer software engineer. There were 247,000 Asian-American software engineers at the end of the decade, the Census reported.

Locally, in Hartford County, the finance and insurance industry was about 5 percent Hispanic, 82 percent white, 8 percent black and 5 percent Asian. About 57 percent of workers in the sector are women.

In Hartford County, manufacturing of transportation equipment, which includes the aerospace sector, was about 4 percent Hispanic, 84 percent white, 6 percent black and 6 percent Asian. About 79 percent of workers in the sector are men.

Next: wage data by race and gender.


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2 thoughts on “Jobs Women Do, Jobs Men Do

  1. Kim

    Last I checked, elementary and middle school teachers were very much required to have an “advanced education” — at least as much (a Bachelor’s and sometimes a Master’s) as “software engineers”. Sadly, this mistake probably occurred because of sexism — we don’t credit female professions with being as “difficult”. Ugh.

    1. Mara Lee Post author


      My fault for an unclear antecedent — the ‘those’ referred to secretaries, truck drivers and construction laborers, not all the jobs mentioned before — but your larger point is right, that our society tends to discount teaching as less intellectually rigorous than many other professions.

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