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Campus Pride: The Most LGBTQ-friendly Colleges of 2017

Campus Pride is a nonprofit organization supporting LGBTQ+ student leaders and campus organizations. The primary goal is to build and develop programs and services supporting LGBTQIA students and create safer, LGBTQ-friendly environment, improve quality of life on campuses and in colleges and universities.

Each year Campus Pride publishes a list of the best colleges and universities for LGBTQ+ students to help LGBTQ+ youth and families find the best and safest colleges. The lists are formed based on the Campus Pride index. It evaluates the campuses’ LGBTQ-friendly benchmarks for inclusive policies, programs, and practices. This index reflects colleges’ and universities’ progress in creating an inclusive and safe environment and welcoming atmosphere for LGBTQIA+ students.

Here is a 2017 list of 25 most LGBTQ-friendly colleges.

Augsburg University

Augsburg is rated 5 out of 5 stars by Campus Pride. Its LGBTQIA+ student services provide support, advising and mentorship for LGBTQIA+ -identified students. They perform training for students, staff, and faculty on gender and sexual equality to raise awareness and promote visibility. They offer the Karen Neitge Scholarship, LGBTQIA+ Student Leadership Awards and Augsburg Pride Award to LGBTQIA+ -identified students, staff and faculty. Augsburg University campus has 20 safe Unisex (all-gender) restrooms available to students, faculty, staff, and visitors.

Elon University

This private liberal arts university has Gender & LGBTQIA Center (GLC). It provides support and advocacy to the students. The 3 V's of the GLC state that GLC wants students to feel Validated, Valued, & Victorious. Elon University offers LGBTQ studies program, specific courses, new employees training on sexual orientation and gender identity issues. Each year university conducts Lavender Graduation to recognize students’ achievements and input, honor lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and ally students. Elon University has over 90 gender-neutral restrooms. Campus Pride gave Elon 5 stars.

Harvey Mudd College

Harvey Mudd’s Office of Institutional Diversity is a social justice education hub for university’s campus community. OID aims to increase awareness, allyship, and action. OID provides strong support to trans students, offering guidance and assistance. The college has gender-neutral housing available, help find a therapist to begin transition process - Student Health Insurance Plan covers gender reassignment.

Indiana University Bloomington

The LGBTQ+ Culture Center creates a welcoming environment and provides support, mentoring, information and counseling to the IU community. Center offers free ally training, books, videos, CDs, and zines on the issue in their LGBTQ+ Library. There are also LGBTQ and ally groups and organizations in IU (Sigma Phi Beta Fraternity, Theta Nu Xi Multicultural Sorority).

Ithaca College

Ithaca College Center for LGBT Education, Outreach, and Services provides resources and services, promotes academic achievements and personal growth, helps LGBT and allied students to thrive in the welcoming atmosphere. Center offers educational presentations and training workshops on various themes concerning the issue. Besides the Center, Ithaca College comprises 4 LGBT student organizations.

Kansas State University

The LGBT Resource Center at Kansas State University provides information and support to LGBT students and employees. The Center promotes equality and justice through education, various programs, and outreach. Kansas State University also conducts Lavender Graduation to recognize accomplishments and contributions of LGBT and ally students. The Center works with Housing and Dining Services to ensure each student gets appropriate housing. Besides LGBT Resource Center, the university comprises a number of LGBT organizations, like student organization Sexuality and Gender Alliance, Gender Collective or global organization Broad Spectrum. There are all-gender and lockable restrooms available to the Kansas State University students.

Macalester College

[email protected] is part of the Department of Multicultural Life at Macalester College. It supports students’ organizations and initiatives, like Allies Project, Gender & Sexuality Resource Center (GSRC), The Out and Proud community, Trans* @ Mac.  Allies Project is a group of faculty, staff, and students dedicated to creating safe and supportive environment for LGBTQ+ students.All members are required to attend Allies Project development workshops and educational programs. Students have access to the all-gender restrooms and all-gender locker room on Macalester campus.

Montclair State University

The LGBTQ Center at Montclair State University provides resources and programs, advocacy and support, working with campus partners and student organizations. The Center offers various workshops on diversity as well as LGBTQ-specific workshops, LGBTQ Minor Program and Safe Space Program. The Center hosts annual Pride Awards Ceremony to honor outstanding students, organizations, and departments for their input to the LGBTQ community.

Ohio State University

Ohio State University Multicultural Center supports LGBTQ Initiatives, providing programs and services - Student Cohort Groups, Leadership Opportunities, Education Programs and Signature Events. The Q*mmunity Groups comprises a number of initiatives and groups. First Year Q*mmunity supports the first year and transfer students, Coming Out for Racial Equity is committed to building alliances across race, gender, and sexuality. Educational programs include Ally Week - an outreach program focused on promoting awareness, The Revolution - series of activities and talks, aimed to create engagement of the participants with student leaders campus, and Safe Zone program, which provides basic info on the issue and teaches how to be an active ally.

Pennsylvania State University

LGBTQA Student Resource Center at the Pennsylvania State University offers workshops and training, five LGBTQA scholarship programs, hosts many events, promotes students engagement. There are discussion groups, mentorship and internship programs, LBGTQA student groups, The LGBTQA Rainbow Retreat annual leadership program available to the Pennsylvania State University students. University carries out National Coming out Week, Pride Week and LGBTQA Lecture series each year and hosts Lavender Graduation ceremony.


Other LGBTQ-friendly colleges on the Campus Pride list:

Portland State University

Princeton University

Rutgers University-New Brunswick

San Diego State University

Southern Oregon University

Tufts University

University of Colorado at Boulder

University of Louisville

University of Massachusetts-Amherst

University of Oregon

University of Pennsylvania

University of Washington

University of Wisconsin-Green Bay

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Washington State University


You can check Campus Pride index of you college here and find out how LGBTQ-friendly it is.

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