Despite a consistent effort by universities to advertise study abroad to all students, research shows that undergraduate study abroad programs — both at USC and nationally — are primarily dominated by female students.Data compiled by the Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences shows that in the 2014-15 school year, 70 percent of Dornsife study abroad students were female, while only 30 percent were male — despite the school’s fairly even female to male ratio of 51 to 49 percent. This number has improved slightly since 2012, when 77 percent of Dornsife study abroad students were female.These findings are not specific to USC undergraduate programs. In fact, data retrieved from the Institute of International Education profiling U.S. study abroad students for the 2012-2013 school year found that nationally 65.3 percent of study abroad students were female.Kyron Jacques, a senior who studied abroad his junior year in Madrid, said that the uneven gender distribution was obvious in his abroad experience. His first semester there were about 22 females to three males in his program, whereas his second semester there were about 23 females to three males.Jacques said the experience of being one of the few men could easily be alienating for some people.“[One example] is that there would be times when we were out and my group would go to the women’s restroom, and I would be left alone in a bar in a foreign country,” he said.In the 2006 comprehensive study “The Gender Gap: in Post-Secondary Study Abroad,” Steven W. Shirley of the University of North Dakota, researched reasons for this gender gap, and possible solutions to better market such abroad opportunities to male students.One main reason, Shirley postulates, is the possibility that a person’s major can be a factor as to why more females study abroad than males. Senior John Zamora, who is studying in Paris this semester, explained that he thought a lot of his friends’ academic schedules held them back from taking advantage of USC’s study abroad programs.“A lot of my friends happen to be pre-med or pre-law, and they don’t really have space for a study abroad program,” Zamora said.Senior Kevin Tsukii, who is currently studying abroad in Madrid, also mentioned that “major is definitely important” in whether or not someone chooses to study abroad.However, despite the commonly held belief that field of study might play a major role in gender discrepancies in abroad programs, research might show field of study has less pull than we believe.According to Shirley’s study, over time there has been a significant increase in study abroad participation in traditional “male-focused” fields of study — like engineering and physical sciences — and a decrease in study abroad participation in traditional “female-focused” fields of study — like humanities, social sciences and fine/applied arts. Despite the increases in “male-focused” and decreases in “female-focused” majors going abroad, the overall percentage of males and females abroad has remained fairly constant.However, Shirley’s study did find that males more strongly felt studying abroad delayed their potential graduation date than females did. Yet according to Dornsife study abroad advisor Vito Grillo, there is still not one explanation for why females study abroad more than males.“There is much speculation as to why more females study abroad than males, but there is no definitive answer,” Grillo wrote in an email.Still, the idea that one’s career or personal life could be improved by an experience abroad seems to be a contributing factor as to why people go abroad. Tsukii, for example, said that one of his reasons for studying in Madrid is because he is interested in possibly doing immigration reporting in L.A. and being comfortably fluent in Spanish would be extremely beneficial.“Language is such an important part of journalism. Journalism relies on your ability to ask a certain person a question and for them to understand,” he said.Similarly, Jacques believes part of the reason he chose to study abroad is that he is interested in nonprofits and global business.“Something I’ve learned after going abroad is how you’re treated different when you’re more familiar with the culture or you speak a certain language,” Jacques said. “I found that I am able to express a different personality when I am speaking Spanish versus when I’m speaking English — and I think that people can pick up on that because you’re able to communicate a certain way.”Zamora, a senior majoring in international relations, agreed that his school focus encouraged an abroad experience.“As an IR student, I think it would be a great experience learning about European politics and discovering more in this region of the world,” he said.Zamora is currently in the USC Paris program as one of four men in a group of 12 — a more even gender distribution than the previous semester when there were 12 women to one man. Zamora said that he thinks there might be cultural differences that make study abroad appeal to a more female crowd.“I think most girls romanticize the idea of going abroad — the idea that going abroad will be the time of your life,” Zamora said.He also said that he thinks there are more movies of women than men going abroad. On the contrary, he thinks that males might rather just stay on campus and create memories, or foundations, that are more permanent.“Maybe [guys] don’t feel the need to have an external experience because USC is already a new place. They don’t necessarily need to be abroad to make those memories,” he said.Similarly, Will Hanley, a senior who studied abroad last spring in London as one of four males out of about 40 students in the communication program, decided to study abroad partly to change his routine. But, he said some of his friends who chose not to go abroad “were perfectly content with their routines back home.”One point that Hanley brought up, however, is that he noticed that he’s seen a lot fewer men go abroad when they don’t know anyone in their respective programs.“I rarely see a solo guy going somewhere alone. But I have seen a lot of big groups of guys going [abroad] together,” he said.Hanley said that if his male friends had gone abroad, they would have had to go alone without any friends in their program.But, Hanley believes more women go in organized groups or are simply more comfortable going by themselves and making new friends. Zamora noticed a similar trend, pointing out that “girls tend to study abroad with other girls.” Jacques agreed.“[If you’re a guy] and you choose to go abroad, you’re going to be a minority, and that can be alienating for some guys,” he said.One finding of Shirley’s study is that the influence of parents is not as strong in the decision-making process of males. Hanley said that his parents’ encouragement helped him in his final decision to spend the semester abroad.“I think it was one of the things about USC that [my parents] were most excited about since the beginning,” Hanley said.Jacques said that in his experience, not only had his parents been encouraging, but going abroad was always part of the plan.“There was always the assumption that I would study abroad. It was a natural part of college for me,” he said.Nevertheless, research is not conclusive as to why females are more likely to go abroad than males, but Shirley’s study does suggest that study abroad advisors ensure they communicate the correct information to male students.“In many cases, courses taken during a semester or year abroad can fit precisely into a student’s curricular plan, and those details must be addressed and confirmed well in advance of the student ever heading abroad,” Shirley wrote.Grillo said in an email that his team does need to convince more males that studying abroad is important and a worthwhile undertaking.“I think if more males realized how study abroad can make their resume stand out, more would take a serious look at it,” he wrote.
Action on Centre gets underway with the meeting of home favourite Heather Watson and two-time semi finalist Viktoria Azarenka.Second seed Simona Halep goes up against Peng Shuai today.While five-time champion Venus Williams goes up against Japan’s Naomi Osaka. Andy Murray and Rafa Nadal are both looking to book their places in the second week at Wimbledon today.Top seed Murray is up against Italy’s Fabio Fognini in the last match on Centre.While Nadal takes on the Russian, Karen Khachanov. Photo: © pixabay read more
Barbara Shecter Comment Sponsored By: What you need to know about passing the family cottage to the next generation Some shareholders of a Quebec-based biotechnology company are objecting to a dilutive restructuring that wipes out most of their equity in Prometic Life Sciences Inc., a transaction they didn’t get to vote on because the Toronto Stock Exchange granted the company’s application to go ahead without a shareholder vote due to “financial hardship.”“We’re being just driven into oblivion here,” Jean Pierre Toupin, a 72-year-old editor and former economist who has been an investor in Prometic for about five years, told the Financial Post on Tuesday.But Laval-based Prometic, which boasted a spot in the benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index until last June and investors including the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), said the transactions were the only viable option to reduce the firm’s debt burden and interest payments, and provide some cash to continue operations following a series of setbacks. Laval-based Prometic Life Sciences Inc. boasted a spot in the benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index until last June.Peter J. Thompson/National Post Share this storyDramatic dilution at Prometic Life Sciences draws ire of shareholders Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn Reddit Twitter More Facebook Dramatic dilution at Prometic Life Sciences draws ire of shareholders Toronto Stock Exchange granted the company’s application to go ahead without a shareholder vote due to ‘financial hardship’ The biotech firm is developing a process to separate plasma proteins to treat orphan illnesses, but stumbled following a delayed U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval, as well as a delay in receiving a research and development tax credit reimbursement from the United Kingdom. The chief executive was replaced late last year, and the company would have breached covenants under its credit facilities with SALP on March 31 if not granted a waiver.Following a $229 million debt-to-equity conversion and a private placement completed Tuesday, Thomvest Asset Management affiliate Structured Alpha LP jumped from owning or controlling just 3.6 per cent to more than 80 per cent of Prometic’s issued and outstanding common shares. SNC scandal casting chill over DPA regime before it can show its worth, advocates fear The short seller who sent Dollarama into a spin sees Canada as land of opportunity for activism Law firm plans to launch shareholder class action over alleged SNC-Lavalin disclosure delay Thomvest Asset Management is a private investment firm controlled by Peter J. Thomson, a member of Canada’s richest family and a board member at Thomson Reuters.“Mr. Thomson is aware of the Prometic investment but has no day-to-day involvement in managing or overseeing the investment and was not involved in negotiating or implementing the Prometic restructuring transactions,” according to a spokesperson for Thomvest.The private placement at Prometic, which included issuing shares to Consonance Capital Management, raised $75 million, which will be used “to fund working capital needs and for general corporate purposes including the advancement of its drug discovery platforms,” according to a news release issued by Prometic on April 15.In the same release, Prometic said it had hired investment banks and taken steps to try to refinance, sell non-core assets, or forge partnerships to shore up operations, but no other viable option could be brought to fruition in time to steady the heavily leveraged company.The decision to rely on the financial hardship exemption — which meant the plan would not be put to a shareholder vote — was made following a recommendation by a special committee of independent directors whose members were all “free from interest in the Debt Conversion, the Warrant Repricing and the Private Placement, and unrelated to the parties involved in these transactions,” the statement said.But the restructuring is not sitting well with some shareholders who have found their holdings diluted, and they are not consoled by an option to make further investments through a follow-up rights offering.Toupin, who is from Ottawa but is living in Montreal, said he recently connected with a group of investors from across the country who feel much of the company’s promise is being taken out from under existing shareholders by other involved parties. They had urged the Toronto Stock Exchange to reject the requested exemption that allowed the Prometic restructuring to go ahead without a shareholder vote because they wanted more say in the company’s future.“This was part of my retirement money…. It’s a significant loss for me, and it’s probably more dramatic for a lot of other people,” Toupin said, suggesting retail investors could number in the thousands. Prometic shares, which traded at more than $3 apiece in 2016, closed at 6.5 cents on Tuesday.Shareholders have also taken their concerns to regulators that oversee the Toronto Stock Exchange, including Quebec’s Authorité des marchés financiers (AMF).“We have actually received several complaints in this file and we are going to analyze them,” Sylvain Théberge, a spokesperson for the AMF, told the Financial Post in an emailed statement on Tuesday. Théberge declined to comment further.Catherine Kee, manager of corporate communications at TMX Group, parent company of the Toronto Stock Exchange, declined to discuss the Prometic case.“We don’t comment on individual issuer matters,” she said.Mike Osborn, a spokesperson for CalPERS, declined to comment on the situation at Prometic, but confirmed that the largest public pension fund in the United States owned a stake in the Canadian biotech firm at the end of June 2018, the period covered by its most recent annual report. The stake at that time consisted of 1,464,100 shares with a market value US$578,762 and a book value of US$3.38 million.“About the company, we do not have a comment,” he said in an email.On Tuesday, as Prometic announced that the restructuring had gone ahead, the company said it intends to seek approval from its shareholders for a share consolidation at a special meeting in Montreal on June 19. The company now has 20,947,510,578 common shares issued and outstanding on a fully-diluted basis, including all outstanding warrants, stock options and restricted share units.Prometic also installed Kenneth Galbraith as chief executive officer. Galbraith spent 13 years in senior management at QLT Inc., a Vancouver-based biopharmaceutical company that merged with Massachusetts-based Aegerion Pharmaceuticals Inc. in 2016.Simon Best, who had been interim CEO of Prometic, was appointed lead independent director, and Stefan Clulow, managing director and chief investment officer of Thomvest Asset Management, was appointed chair of Prometic’s board of directors.• Email: email@example.com | Twitter: 1 Comments Email Join the conversation → Featured Stories Recommended For YouChina shares rise, yuan stronger after Q2 GDP meets expectationsAP FACT CHECK: Trump wrong about Dems, census, citizenshipChina June crude oil throughput rises to record on new plantsJapan PM Abe’s ruling bloc set for solid upper house win – pollsAustralian dollar strengthens on encouraging Chinese data April 24, 201911:48 AM EDT Filed under News FP Street ← Previous Next → advertisement read more