Popular Career Paths For Women In 1970 V.S. 2021

Feb 19, 2021
09:22 A.M.
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Oh, the 70s. A time for disco, bell-bottoms, and cultural change. One of the significant changes that were set in motion includes occupation choices for women.


The 1970s were an interesting time. Though many jobs were still largely genderized, it was also the time the Women's Liberation Movement was chugga chugging full steam ahead.

Fast forward to today, women continue to demand equality in the workforce. However, the roles have changed significantly. We're taking a look back at women's career paths in the 70s vs. now — what's changed?

Life In the 70s

Getty Images

Getty Images


The 1970s are categorized as a time of transformation. Amended laws and influential advocacy from prominent feminist thinkers like Betty Friedan, started to open the doors to more diverse job opportunities for women.

With that being as it may, many women still had jobs that were traditional "women jobs." Though change did eventually come, it was gradual.

Top Jobs For Women In The 70s



Around this time, it had not been common to see a women truck driver, for instance. Some of the popular career choices for women living in the 1970s were vastly different from "male jobs." They included:


  • Secretaries
  • Teachers
  • Bookkeepers
  • Waitresses
  • Nurses

Life Now

Photo by LinkedIn Sales Navigator on Unsplash

Photo by LinkedIn Sales Navigator on Unsplash

We've truly come a long way, and a lot has changed as far as career opportunities go. Men and women work many of the same jobs now.

Jobs that have now become mostly women-dominated, which were traditionally male-dominated occupations, are plenty. They include human resources assistants, bartenders, bill collectors, opticians, and travel clerks, among many others.


Highest Paying Jobs For Women Today

Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

For the woman looking to position herself within occupations with the most earning potential, these are some of the options:

  • CEO
  • Civil engineer
  • Pharmacist
  • Management analyst
  • Computer and Information Systems Manager
  • Lawyer

The Persistent Gender Pay Gap

Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

We can undoubtedly acknowledge the progress that has come from the 1970s to 2021. However, there is still the persistent issue of the gender pay gap.

Admittedly, there has also been progress in this space too. According to a 2018 report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, women earned 81 cents for every dollar earned by men. That's 19 cents more than in 1979.

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