Date of Award

Spring 5-13-2017

Degree Type

Honors Thesis

Department

Agricultural and Applied Economics

First Advisor

Chian Jones-Ritten

Abstract

Women have always had a stake in agriculture. The number of women as key farming operators rose from 28 percent to nearly 60 percent from 1940 through the mid-1990s (Blau, Ferber, & Winkler, 2014, p. 27) as men were sent to war during WWII (Adams, 1997, p.5). At the same time, unfortunately, the total number of farms declined by more than half from 1940 to 1980. (Labao & Meyer, 2001, pp. 107-108). In an effort to understand historical trends of women’s involvement in agriculture, a research project was performed tracking the participation rate, collegiate enrollment, and employment as faculty of women in agriculture across the United States and in Wyoming.

The goal of this research was to analyze historical trends of women’s involvement in agriculture. The first research objective was to determine the trend in women’s participation in agriculture by comparing the number of women as principle operators across the U.S. to Wyoming. The second research objective was to determine the trend of the rate at which women have received Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctorate degrees in general across the U.S. and in

Wyoming compared to the rate at which women have received agricultural degrees at those levels. The final research objective was to determine the trend in the number of women faculty members of agricultural programs across the U.S. and in Wyoming compared to the number of women faculty members in general. It was determined that women’s participation rate, collegiate enrollment, and faculty status in agriculture across the U.S. and in Wyoming has historically increased.

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