Women Empowerment has been the central issue of the 21st century with women coming forth and raising their voices for equal rights and opportunities. Although, some may say, that this movement has taken a disgraceful turn in some aspects, I say, it still holds a great meaning to many others who suffer in silence.
From the point of the first movement ever organised for the rights of women at Seneca Falls in 1848, when women weren’t even allowed to speak in public to today, when women are emerging in every facet of life; be it sports, politics, science, technology or design, women have come a long way. Our female predecessors around the globe have fought long and hard for us to utilize this arduously earned freedom to achieve what they could not and empower others with the same predicament. Unfortunately, even today, there are several women who continue to suffer from unjust and discriminatory treatment, violence, and other forms of harassment towards them. According to WHO, 1 in a 3 women worldwide have been subjected to either physical or sexual violence in their lifetime. There are several parts of the world where women are revoltingly prejudiced against because of some age-old stereotypical androcentric pre-constructed norms of the society.
Last year, the world was stunned by the story of Mahsa Amini, a 22 year-old, who was beaten to death by the morality police of Iran for “improperly” wearing her hijab. The women around the world were enraged and shocked and thus came together in solidarity to revolt against this heinous crime. Protests erupted all across Iran led by women who tore off their hijabs, cut their hair and took on the rally cry of “women, life, freedom.” It is extremely sad to think about how even after centuries of a fierce battle against these evil atrocities upon women, we still hear stories such as Mahsa’s. Every such story, must bring such deep sense of regreat and defeat to every women hearing it.
These stories make one realise that the battle for equality is still far from complete and there is yet, a long and difficult road to cover. All of this makes it even more important, that women are aware of their rights and are conscious of the power they hold in the society and education is the most powerful element to this process. Truly said by Oprah once, “Education is the key to unlocking the world. It is the passport to freedom.” Education, should be made accessible to the women around the globe. They need to be made aware of their rights and of the opportunities available for them.
Distance learning can prove immensely effective in this aspect. Women can be introduced to numerous online programmes as it will equip them with the higher degrees necessary for a quality employment with great revenue and benefits. This will not only pave a way for their bright future but will also ensure the enlightenment of the next generation, with educated and learned women in the household.
With the acquirement of a higher degree, women can also look for jobs and ensure their financial independence which will cease them from being dependent on the male individuals of the family and provide them with a sense of independence. Online degrees such as MBA can also be a medium for women to connect with the corporate world and pursue business. They can initiate their own establishments and create a chain of further jobs. One can also pursue the subject of commerce further and choose to be a financial analyst, tax advisor, business analyst or the ever glorious job of a chartered accountant. There are subjects such as arts, design and even linguistics available for the genuinely interested students. One can pursue, any subject of their interest and look forward to several job opportunities in that field.
These online degrees can be an effective medium to empower women as they motivate them to pursue their subject of choice and simultaneously provide them with strong feet to stand their ground in society. With the Age of Information gradually taking over human race, distance learning can prove efficacious in the matter of women empowerment.