Minority Serving Institutions with LGBT Initiatives

For many students, a college campus that is inviting, affirming, and supportive of students’ identities plays a crucial part in their success. Knowing this, many college campuses have begun to make strides to develop programs and enclaves of support for a variety of communities within their student body. One of these communities is the LGBT community. Today’s Monday Morning MSI Line Up features MSIs that have LGBT-focused programming or centers to support their LGBT students.

bowie state university1.) Bowie State University – Gender and Sexual Diversities Resource Center
The mission of the Gender and Sexual Diversities Resource Center at Bowie State University is to foster an environment that is open, safe, and inclusive for people of all sexualities and gender identities. The Center has resources for anyone who is interested in learning about LGBT people, issues, and concerns. The Resource Center works with faculty, staff, and students to increase awareness and affirmation of LGBTQIA individuals to reduce discrimination and harassment based on sexual orientation and gender identity. In addition, the center collaborates with faculty, staff, and students to develop programs to promote knowledge and awareness. The Resource Center collaborates with the Gay-Straight Alliance at BSU and other organizations on campus to develop programs, workshops, and activities to raise campus awareness about LGBT concerns. The Resource Center maintains a collection of LGBTQIA resource materials (books and pamphlets) for use by the University community.

Fayetteville State University2.) Fayetteville State University – SafeZone Office (SafeZone Ally Program)
The purpose of the Safezone Program at Fayetteville State University is to create an affirming and supportive campus climate through identifying and educating members of our campus community who are opened to and supportive of all individuals regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. A Safezone Ally at FSU is an informed campus partner who has committed time and energy through organized training to learn more about individuals that may identify as Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning or may be unsure of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

NCAT3.) North Carolina A&T University – People Recognizing our Underlying Difference (P.R.O.U.D)
PROUD is a student organization that supports the diverse identities of lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender, queer (LBGTQ), same gender loving people, and allies as individuals and as groups, especially students, faculty and staff of NC A&T, with the cultivation of safe, non-judgmental space, educational outreach, advocacy, and visibility of LBGTQ issues and information. Their goal is to provide a safe and understanding atmosphere for all students on campus.

Howard4.) Howard University – Coalition of Activist Students Celebrating the Acceptance of Diversity and Equality (CASCADE)
CASCADE is an acronym for the Coalition of Activist Students Celebrating the Acceptance of Diversity and Equality. It is the bisexual, lesbian, allied, and gay organization of students at Howard University and its mission is to celebrate, educate, and advocate for the diversity and equality of the LGBTA community. Cascade is responsible for educating the Howard University community about the history and the current status of the LGBT community and its allies. Cascade offers a safe space for our fellow gay, lesbian, bisexual, ally and transgender brothers and sisters, whilst celebrating the diversity within our community.

San Diego State5.) San Diego State University – LGBT Studies Major
San Diego State University is only the second college or university in North America to have a major in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Studies, beginning in January 2012. SDSU has also had a minor in LGBT Studies since fall 2009, and now has a Graduate-Level Certificate in LGBT Studies. LGBT Studies is an interdisciplinary program, not affiliated with any one department. Courses offered include LGBT literature, history of sexuality, media and sexuality, psychology of human sexual behavior, sexuality in modern society, valuing human diversity, lesbian lives and cultures, among many others. There are also over a dozen internships in LGBT organizations. Until now, students interested in learning about the LGBT community have had to rely on the grapevine to know which courses to take. San Diego has a large LGBT population so SDSU is a natural home for this program. Creating an environment where all students feel safe, included and inspired to learn is an important part of the San Diego State experience.

fiu6.) Florida International University – Multicultural LGBTQA Initiatives at FIU, Division of Student Affairs
Multicultural Programs and Services (MPAS) LGBTQA initiatives at Florida International University strives to reduce homophobia and heterosexism on both campuses through education, advocacy, and awareness. The program contributes to an open campus climate that is safe and accepting for all members of the University community regardless of sexual orientation. LGBT initiatives include LGBT 101 presentations, a program designed to educate students about and sensitize students to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender/sexual individuals.

UTEP7.) University of Texas El Paso – Rainbow Miner Initiative
The ultimate mission of the Rainbow Miner Initiative is to create an environment at UTEP that embraces individual difference, sustains inclusion, and cultivates a campus that is free from bias. Our vision and inspiration for this initiative is to ensure the UTEP campus is welcoming and inviting for all students, faculty, administration, and staff, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. They hope to fulfill these goals through advocacy, community building, and education. The Rainbow Miner symbolizes a safe space for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer (LGBTQ) community and their allies; an environment free of judgment, bias, and discrimination

University-of-California-Irvine8.) University of California Irvine – LGBT Resource Center
The LGBT Resource Center is dedicated to providing a safe and welcoming environment for UCI’s diverse lesbian, gay bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, and ally communities. They raise awareness, increase visibility, and engage in advocacy regarding LGBTQQIA issues. In addition, they provide opportunities for leadership and personal development, serve as a resource for LGBTQQIA students, and create programs and services that work to eliminate heterosexism, homophobia, and gender identity oppression. They strive to develop an atmosphere of acceptance and wellbeing in which the campus community can support the academic mission of the university.

uic9.) University of Illinois Chicago – Gender and Sexuality Center
For 20 years, we have been providing UIC students, staff, faculty, and alumni and members of the Chicagoland area with dynamic programming and resources around gender identity sexual orientation and their intersections with other identities. The GSC provides education, outreach, research, and support for and about lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and allied people. They serve students, faculty, staff, alumni, and community members throughout Chicago of all gender identities, gender expressions, and sexual orientations through cultural events, scholarly lectures, public dialogues, and interactive trainings. They also connect students, faculty, and staff at UIC with resources, referrals, and opportunities.

uhouston10.) University of Houston
The mission of the UH LGBT Resource Center is to launch the next generation of healthy, proud, academically successful lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) citizens, leaders, and advocates. By providing support and a safe space for LGBTQ people on campus to access resources, ask questions, and make connections, we strive for them to develop a positive self-image and a sense of optimism about their future as a member of the LGBTQ community. Through visibility and education, we seek to create an environment of LGBTQ acceptance and inclusion for the entire campus community.

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