Women in UIL Journalism


Noah Davila, Publisher

Stepping into a UIL State Journalism meet, a competitor can see many things. Row after row of desks, students setting up laptops, stacks of scratch paper, and printers beeping away. One thing however, will stand out from other competitions. Most of the room is women.

 By recent estimates, women constitute 41% of all journalists. This is contrasted by female students reported to make up a large percentage of journalism school enrollment, and the growing female participation in UIL competitions.

“I think it’s more female dominated,” Senior Vivian Lehlann of Lindale Highschool said. “I see evidence of that at every meet I go to”

While difficult to exactly determine why exactly this shift is occurring, students attribute the slide to emotionality, access to extracurriculars such as yearbooks, or a mixture of both in addition to less and less men finding an interest in the field.

“I feel like men tend to be pushed to less writing-related extracurriculars,” Lehlann said. “That kind of leaves it more open to women.”

Some female students applaud their growing footing in journalism, hoping it is a sign of what is to come in the industry.

“I think because girls are getting the opportunity now to get into journalism,” Senior Jesika Miller od Lindale said. “They’re gonna have the confidence to go out and get a job in the field.”

While still behind in equal representation of women, journalism stands to soon become a female led industry. Even now this march can be seen with publications like USA Today boasting a 51% female journalist staff.

“Back in the old days, it was a lot more men doing a lot of these kinds of jobs, and women were more stay-at-home or working certain woman approved jobs only.” Lehlann said. “Now that that’s branching out more, some of these fields are starting to shift and journalism is one of those that’s becoming more female dominated. I think that’s definitely going to have more of an impact in the future.