08 March 2013
The Royal College of Surgeons, psychologists from the University of Exeter, the Medical Women’s Federation and Scalpel (one of the UK’s largest undergraduate surgical societies) have today launched a video podcast to encourage women to embark on and succeed in a surgical career.
In the video, both female and male surgeons at all stages of their career share their views on what makes surgery an enjoyable and rewarding career.
Research from psychologists Dr Kim Peters and Prof Michelle Ryan from the University of Exeter has shown that when medical students and surgical trainees think of surgical consultants, they think of someone with masculine characteristics. When they compare themselves with this stereotype, women are most likely to think that they don’t ‘fit in.’
The research finds that a lack of visible role models has led to promising female medical students opting out of pursuing a surgical career. The video looks in part to address this shortage, providing a range of accessible and inspirational role models.
Recent evidence published in the RCS Bulletin shows that women who apply for surgical training are proportionately more likely to be appointed than men – however, surgery remains a predominately male profession. Given that women make up the majority of those qualifying from medical school, surgery could be missing out on some of the best graduates.
For more information about how to become a surgeon visit the RCS careers site or Women in Surgery group.
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