The changing gender landscape of pediatric urology fellowship: results from a survey of fellows and recent graduates
J Pediatr Urol
© 2018 Journal of Pediatric Urology Company Introduction: Women are entering the subspecialty of pediatric urology at an accelerated rate. Gender differences affecting fellowship and job selection have been identified in other fields of medicine. Objective: The objective of this study was to understand gender differences in pediatric urology fellowship and job selection and how they may affect the workforce. Study design: A 47-question electronic survey consisting of questions regarding demographics, residency training, and factors influencing fellowship and job selection was distributed to current fellows and recent graduates in pediatric urology in May 2017. Results: A total of 111 recent and current fellows were contacted, and 72% completed the survey (55% female [F] and 45% male [M]; 61% current fellows and 39% recent fellows). Respondents rated factors important in choosing pediatric urology on a scale of 1–5 (1, not important and 5, extremely important), and the top three for both genders were 1-working with children, 2-influential mentors, and 3-bread and butter cases such as inguinal orchiopexy. During residency, 93% of respondents reported having influential mentors in pediatric urology. However, mentorship was more important in fellowship choice for males than females (3.6 F, 4.1 M; P-value = 0.048), and 45% reported having only male mentors. Rating factors important in job choice on a scale of 1–5, respondents reported the top factors as 1-rapport with partners/mentorship (4.5), 2-geography/family preferences (4.3), and 3-participation in mentoring/teaching (3.8). Although most job selection criteria were rated similarly between genders, females rated call schedule higher than males (3.5 F, 2.9 M, P-value = 0.009). Although most females and males (79% of F, 78% of M, P-value = 0.868) sought primarily academic positions, a smaller proportion of females accepted academic positions (52% of F, 72% of M, P-value 0.26), and females reported lower satisfaction regarding the availability of jobs on a scale of 1–5 (1, very dissatisfied and 5, very satisfied; 3.1 F, 3.7 M; P-value = 0.034), particularly in academic positions (3.1 F, 3.7 M; P-value = 0.06). This difference was more pronounced in current fellows than recent graduates and may represent a worsening trend. Conclusion: Although significant gender differences in fellowship and job selection may exist in other fields, we found that women and men choose pediatric urology fellowships and jobs using similar criteria, which include work–life balance. Gender differences exist in the influence of mentors, indicating a need for more female mentors. While men and women sought similar types of jobs, women were less satisfied with the availability of jobs, particularly academic jobs, than men, which warrants further investigation.
School of Medicine