Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

M.A. in Journalism

First Advisor

Bradley Schultz

Second Advisor

Kristen Swain

Third Advisor

Robert Magee

Relational Format



This paper explores the successful experiences of women in top media management and their attitudes toward factors of the glass ceiling to identify which factors they perceive as most important, those that remain prominent, and other factors that may have aided in their success. The glass ceiling is the “unseen, yet unbreachable barrier that keeps minorities and women from rising to the upper rungs of the corporate ladder, regardless of their qualifications or achievements” (Cotter, Hermsen, Ovadia, & Vanneman, 2001). This ceiling persists for women in top media management, despite increased feminization in these fields. Previous studies conclude that family obligations, lack of development opportunities, lack of mentorship, organizational support, and gendered occupational roles are more prominent factors that hinder women from advancing into top management. An internet survey was used to measure the attitudes of women in media management and to gain qualitative data about their experience. A total of 114 responses were collected and results indicated that nearly half (45.54%) of women reported that they had not experienced the glass ceiling in terms of restricting them from their management careers. Qualitative data revealed, however, that it was not that they had not encountered the glass ceiling; it was the idea that because they had ignored the glass ceiling, they did not believe it restricted them from their management careers. This coping mechanism further normalizes the hegemonic structure of most broadcast environments.


Track: Academic



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