In a recent article in the Asahi News, the trend started in America years ago is starting to affect women’s universities here in Japan. A group of 5 women’s universities in Tokyo (not Showa Women’s where I work) have banded together to study the problem.  A couple of warning-laden statistics:

the number of women-only four-year universities has dropped nearly 20 percent over the past decade to 82, from a peak of 99 in 1998.


There were 4.8 applicants for every vacancy at 75 private women’s four-year universities for this school year, compared with 6.8 for all private universities.

The women’s universities advocate that it is a good place to teach leadership skills without men interfering, the closed nature of the management in Japan this reason is not borne out.

only 10 percent of those in managerial positions in Japan were women, far lower than 37 percent in Germany and 43 percent in the United States.

The outlet for an advanced education not accesible to women historically also rings false.

In 1970, only 6.5 percent of female high school graduates went on to universities or colleges; the ratio was 40.6 percent in 2007.

So my question is, when will my university go co-ed? I have a sneaking suspicion that it may be too late when they finally do decide. I just hope I can retire before then.

By admin

Associate Professor at a Women's University in Tokyo.