Black Hills State University to host workshop on negotiating wages

RAPID CITY, S.D. — It can be a struggle to negotiate a fair salary in the workplace, and statistics show that women have a particularly difficult time being paid as much as their male counterparts. Black Hills State University is hosting a free workshop for women of all ages and career levels to learn how to successfully negotiate a salary or raise.

The American Association of University Women (AAUW) is putting on the event, which will provide coaching on how to communicate your value to employers.

“Our hope is that attendees leave the workshop with a refreshed sense of confidence and critical negotiation skills that will support them in their work and professional advancement,” says Kathryn Johnson, one of the workshop presenters.

According to AAUW, women in the U.S. are paid $80 cents to every dollar men earn. In South Dakota, the pay gap between men and women is $77 cents. For women of color that gap is often even wider, with Native American women making $57 cents for every dollar men earn.

Johnson says that there are a number of reasons behind the gender wage gap. “It’s not necessarily that we lack confidence in terms of doing our jobs, but it may be that we lack confidence to articulate what our value is,” Johnson said in an interview with South Dakota Public Radio, “One of the things that holds women back is that the path of least resistance is to just accept what’s offered, and then move on. But you have to decide that your value is worth a fair pay, the market value. […] You have to feel like you’re getting what you’re worth.”

The workshop is free and open to the public. It will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at BHSU’s Rapid City campus. To register or learn more about the event, visit

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