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Much ado over female doctorates

China Daily | Updated: 2014-01-22 08:18

During a recent panel discussion, Luo Biliang, a member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference from Guangdong province, said that women who study for years to get a doctoral degree lose their "value" when it comes to relationship and marriage. But Luo's perception about female doctorates is misplaced, says an article in Yangcheng Evening News. Excerpts:

Luo's contention was supported by a professor at South China Agricultural University in Guangzhou. In fact, the professor said that while interviewing doctoral candidates, if he finds that a female student is not married or doesn't have a boyfriend, he advises her to find a boyfriend first and then apply for the PhD program. He does so, he said, out of concern for female students' future.

The CPPCC member and the professor both are wrong in their assessments. By raising the issue of female PhD holders at a panel discussion, the CPPCC member has tried to make an unnecessary fuss about it.

Doctoral degree holders are like any other people with the only difference being that they spend a longer (or much longer) time on studies. Besides, the percentage of female doctorates that have boyfriends or are married is no less than that in other groups. In fact, many among them strike the perfect balance between family and studies. Also, some of them, like other people, even sacrifice their careers for their families.

If the CPPCC members are indeed worried about the marital status of female doctorates, they should conduct their own research to find out the relationship between women's educational qualifications and marriage. Only by doing so will they be able to provide genuine help to female PhD holders.

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