Since 1993, the fourth Thursday in April has been designated “Take Our Daughters and Sons To Work Day.” Originally designed by Gloria Steinem as “Take Our Daughters To Work” program, the event has since evolved as a career exploration for all children.
Steinem explains, “When we initially created Take Our Daughters to Work Day, we knew it was only responding to part of the problem—exposing girls to opportunities they were previously shut off to. We always envision that the equal or other half of this was ‘Take Our Sons Home Day,’ since they have been equally deprived of exposure to what work the home requires. Now with Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day, we have envisioned both.”
Of course, when children enter a world that is typically inhabited by adults, there is always the chance some “memorable” interaction might occur. Perhaps this quote from the (departing) fictional character, Michael Scott from the television show “The Office” summarizes a very realistic yet fabricated declaration: “Hi children. I’m Michael Scott. And I am in charge of this place. how do I make you understand? I am like Superman. And the people who work here are like citizens of Gotham City.”
Okay, well maybe that’s a bit extreme. But “Memories of Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day!” is message board has some amusing anecdotes that have been shared by others who have participated.
Now Gawker has a slightly more cynical spin on this event. Maureen O’Connor writes,
Most children who get taken to work end up sitting in a swivel chair, wheeling vacantly around the room while Mom manipulates a spreadsheet. Or listlessly shuffling manila folders while Dad’s secretary tries frantically to think of entertaining tasks. Kids don’t want to do this.
They do, of course, want to skip school. And it feels special to venture into the world of grown-ups. But this is the wrong way to do it! If you want to motivate your child to think about her career, do not take her to a realistic work environment, unless you work in one of the following fields:
- Taste tester of ice cream
- Water Slide Quality Control Consultant
- President of the United States of America, because the title is big enough a thrill
- Video game tester
- Pilot (Must let sit on lap and steer. [Although, maybe not these days, with all the mess going on with ATC.])
So, where to you stand on TODASTW day (no, it’s not a snack food)? Are you for it or against it? And do you have any related amusing anecdotes to share from your facilities?