Teaching women to negotiate for equal pay

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- The Greensboro branch of the American Association of University Women is taking a hands-on approach to teaching women how to negotiate their salaries.

"A woman has to manage a career just like a man does and women don't think like that,”  Jane Terwillegar, secretary and member of AAUW Greensboro Branch, said.

Women have made progress when it comes to receiving equal pay, but the fight to close the wage gap between men and women continues.

"The disparity that often occurs is that a guy will earn a dollar, women will earn 77 cents on the dollar, and  African American women or  Hispanic women may likely only earn 69 cents on the dollar over their career,” Terwillegar said.

AAUW is working to educate local college women about the reality of the job market.

Last spring, the organization launched a workshop called “$tart $mart” at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. $tart $mart teaches women that there is such a thing as a wage gap and that it’s OK to negotiate.

"For women it's difficult. If we're too aggressive we're pushy. If we're not aggressive enough, we're little weak things,” Terwillegar said.

She continued, "When an employer offers you a salary, it's okay to come back and say ‘well how about another week off or how about I work flexible hours’ so that you can begin to balance your life... your husband, your family, your children."

AAUW Greensboro Branch is in the process of funding $tart $mart at three campuses this coming year. Along with returning to UNCG, the association hopes to expand the program to Guilford College and Bennett College.


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