University of Pittsburgh department puts ‘secretary,’ ‘clerk,’ and ‘freshman’ on ‘sexist language’ list



The University of Pittsburgh has declared that terms such as “secretary,” “clerk,” and “omsbudsman” are considered “Sexist Language.”

A new “Gender-Inclusive/Non-Sexist Language Guidelines and Resources” page made by the Office for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion at the University of Pittsburgh features a section titled “Terms to Use to Avoid Sexist Language.”

The guide also considers “mankind,” “chairman,” “freshman,” and “ladies and gentlemen” examples of “Sexist Language” that is considered “Language Not to Use.”

Instead, the guidelines released by the university department recommended that “first year student” should be used instead of “freshman” and “administrator” should be used instead of “Secretary/Clerk.”

In a similar “Sexist Language” guide written by the University of Pittsburgh Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies Program, the term “stewardess” is considered “Sexist Language” as well, and the guide recommends that students use “flight attendant” instead.

A chart with "sexist" language examples listed on the left, and "non-sexist" alternatives listed on the right.
The University’s new language guide also warns against terms like “mankind” and “ombudsman.”
Screenshot/University of Pittsburgh Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

Scott Kiesling, a linguistics professor at the University of Pittsburgh and an author of the guide, stated on the university website that people should use “non-sexist language” out of “politeness.”

“No one is ordering you to use this language. However, some people are asking you to be considerate of their wishes and sensibilities. In short, it’s merely politeness — politeness is about consideration for other people,” Kiesling writes. “You are free to not use this language (it is merely a suggestion for those who would like to know how people would like to handle such things).”

A female flight attendant with a red neck scarf in a shouting position against an orange background.
University of Pittsburgh deems words like “stewardess” sexist, and says that individuals should use the term “flight attendant” instead.

Aidan Segal, a student at the University of Pittsburgh, told Fox News that the recommendations aren’t necessary.

“It’s not necessary, but the university prostrates and virtue signals any chance they get if the optics are good enough,” Segal said. “I’ll just continue rolling my eyes until I get my diploma.”

Fox News reached out to the University of Pittsburgh for comment.


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