Universities in Iran Put Limits on Women's Options
|August 20, 2012|
The following article first appeared on The New York Times. To access, click HERE.
Thirty-six universities in Iran have banned women from 77 fields of study.
The ban, which was first reported Aug. 6 by Iran’s semiofficial Mehr News Agency, came as the results of university entrance exams for the coming academic year were being announced. The restrictions were not noted in previously distributed university leaflets but will affect students for the coming year.
Subjects now open only to men include accounting, engineering and pure chemistry, according to the Iranian news Web site Rooz Online. The University of Tehran, for example, will now accept only male applicants for subjects relating to natural resources, forestry and mathematics. Most petroleum-related subjects have also been made exclusive to men.
“Some fields are not very suitable for women’s nature,” said Abolfazl Hasani, a senior Iranian education official, according to the Rooz Online report.
In July last year, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called a halt to plans to segregate male and female students at Iranian universities, the Egyptian news Web site Ahram Online reported . Women account for nearly 60 percent of university students in Iran.