Women In Print

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  • 1.  The Challenges Women Face in the Printing Industry

    Posted 10-07-2019 14:47
    Edited by Heidi Ashley 10-07-2019 15:48

    The Challenges Women Face in the Printing Industry

    The printing industry is exceptional in that it is creative, fast-paced, continually evolving, diverse, visual and engaging. The printing industry is not unique in that it presents women with a few challenges.

    • Challenge # 1: The industry is male-dominated. While career opportunities within the industry are no longer designated for men only, there was certainly a time when men were the only consideration for a printing career – especially if it was manual labor.
    • Challenge # 2: Attracting women to the industry is difficult. In fact, there is a thesis paper available from 2005 surrounding the topic of lack of female press operators and suggesting the shortage of female press operators could be attributed to invisible barriers that stemmed from preconceived biases (“Can a woman really do that job?”). https://scholarworks.rit.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=9220&context=theses
    •  Challenge # 3: There is a gender gap in pay (this one is a challenge for all industries). Pew Research Center estimated a $0.15 gender pay gap among all workers in 2018. https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/03/22/gender-pay-gap-facts/

    Although these are significant hurdles, they are certainly not insurmountable. Interestingly, they seem to act only as entry challenges. Overall, once women are invested within the industry, they seem to be content with the opportunities and benefits afforded to them. Notably, SGIA’s development of the Women in Print Alliance is a step toward uniting and empowering women in the print community and its creation and cultivation will advance the effort to dispel the challenges facing women within the industry. The WIP Alliance also provides a platform to collect industry research regarding women in printing, which in turn will be a strategic tool to generating connection, interest, and engagement within the industry.

    Join the Women in Print Alliance breakfast Thursday, October 24, 7:30AM at Printing United to network with likeminded print professionals committed to equality, diversity and the celebration of women in print.

    Register: https://www.printingunited.com/events/event-details/2019/10/24/events-calendar/women-in-print-alliance-breakfast

    Not attending Printing United or not a morning person? Join the Women in Print community on PrinterLink to start a discussion of your own: https://printerlink.sgia.org/communities/community-home?CommunityKey=d4dc7206-0594-4a46-a64a-3b26dbe61d94


    Lane Hickey-Wiggins – Women in Print Alliance committee member

    President & CEO

    Douglass Screen Printers Inc


  • 2.  RE: The Challenges Women Face in the Printing Industry

    Posted 10-08-2019 09:17
    Edited by Bob Monte 10-08-2019 22:01
    Throughout my now generations-long career in the print industry, I have watched and experienced the challenges women face. To share just a few personal experiences where women have helped me excel and ways I've given back.

    • At 16, folding T-shirts off the dryer belt, washing screens, mixing ink formulation. It was a woman pulling the squeegee, teaching me the safety rules of OSHA and how color matching is an art where women perform better than men at distinguishing between slight differences between color.
    • At 23, managing a prepress department. My first job with the responsibility of hiring, mentoring and managing a team. Never did I see the person interviewing as a woman or man, wanting the best person for the job. I filled both open positions with women. Finding their attention to the art, to not just do the job, but be the best at what they did far exceeded the men I had replaced.
    • At 31, I accepted the challenge as Director of Print technologies responsible for testing and analyzing printers, cutters, and software for the industry. The findings delivered as white papers sometimes thirty pages deep. I found women on the team to excel at analyzing, communicating, and vocalizing their conclusions. 

      I have walked a long road in this industry, and every step of the way have been amazed by the women I've come across. In return, I stay true the most powerful woman ever in my life, my Mother who taught me to see a person for who they are, not what they appear to be.

    Strategic Account Manager
    Austin TX