Diversity and Inclusion for LGBTQ College Students

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LGBTQ Campus Support and Resources

College can be challenging for all students which is why finding ways to make connections with others who identify similarly can make a big difference. The American College Health Association estimates that at least 10% of college students identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans, asexual, pansexual, or questioning. Although LGBTQ PRIDE is becoming more prevalent, the LGBTQ community often face additional pressures or concerns.

UMD and its surrounding community offer resources and information to both help LGBTQ students navigate the college environment and make connections in a group setting. The University of Maryland has been recognized as “Best of the Best” Top 30 LGBTQ-friendly for 2018 by Campus Pride, and the university is proud of its efforts to create a safer, more inclusive campus atmosphere.

The first stop for support and resources would be the LGBT Equity Center, a unit of the University of Maryland reporting to the Chief Diversity Officer. This LGBTQ+ student-run organization advocates for empowers and provides community spaces for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and, queer people in College Park. They are located at 2218 Marie Mount Hall. For more information, email lgbt@umd.ed.

Ways to get involved:

All UMD students have the opportunity to volunteer with the LGBT Equity Center. Volunteer opportunities are posted in the Rainbow Report every week. Subscribe to the Rainbow Report and fill out their volunteer form to specify what event you want to help out with. Events students can get involved with in the past include Admitted Students Open House, Lavender Leadership Honor Society Induction, Lavender Graduation, Quelcome, and more!

Campus Organizations and Resources:

  • Campus Resource Guide- The LGBT Equity Center offers students a Campus Resource Guide. These resources can be utilized by students, staff, faculty, and people who are interested in learning more about the subject.
  • Lavender Leadership Honor Society– an initiative of the LGBT Equity Center and advised by the student board, this honor society celebrates and develops leadership for LGBTQ+ social justice. The society is believed to be the first collegiate honor society focusing on leadership for LGBTQ+ social justice.
  • oSTEM– For LGBTQ+ students in STEM degree programs.
  • Pride Alliance– a club supporting and advocating for LGBTQ+ people of the general UMD student population.
  • SmithOUT– a club at UMD established for the purpose of creating an official LGBT presence within the Robert H. Smith School of Business.
  • Smith Pride Alliance– an affinity group for LGBTQ+ MBA students in the Smith School of Business.
  • Theta Pi Sigma– a gender-neutral, LGBTQ+ focused Greek organization.
  • Greek Alliance– a student-run organization that encourages a culture of inclusion for LGBTQIA+ individuals within Greek Life. Greek Alliance also offers workshops to encourage chapters on how to make their spaces more inclusive for queer individuals.

Local Organizations:

Due to UMD’s proximity to Washington D.C., students have the opportunity to take part in the city’s events, workshops, Pride, and much more.

The DC Center for the LGBT Community is an organization that educates, empowers, celebrates, and connects the LGBT+ communities. This center focuses on four core areas: health and wellness, arts & culture, social & peer support, and advocacy & community building. They hold several events weekly and welcome anyone to join in. They are located at 2000 14th Street NW, Suite 105, Washington, DC 20009.

The DC Mayor’s Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning Affairs is a great resource as well. They have a Guide to Community Resources that is a searchable directory of LGBTQ organizations in DC that students should definitely check out!

Students that identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, or queer should not only feel secure that they have a safe environment where they can thrive as a student, but they should also feel confident that there is a community that will welcome them to a place they can make connections.UMD works hard to be sure that happens for all its students by promoting advocacy and education as well as creating opportunities for socialization and support.

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2020-07-06T16:38:40-04:000 Comments

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