Campus Pride, a non-profit organization aimed at creating more LGBT-friendly colleges and universities, has released its list of the Top 50 LGBT-Friendly Colleges. University of Maryland, College Park is the only local school to make the list. (Campus Pride is announcing the list in conjunction with the Washington Blade and Huffington Post.)
Shane Windmeyer, one of the founders of Campus Pride, was also one of the researchers for the list. He says he hopes high school students and their families can look at the list to help determine which institution is best, and safest, for their needs.
The list was compiled from those schools that achieved the highest ratings in categories such as LGBT academic life, LGBT student life, LGBT housing and more.
Dr. Marliee Lindemann, former director of the LGBT Studies program at University of Maryland, is excited for the school’s inclusion on the list. She believes that the school’s extensive LGBT studies program with a major and minor certificate is one of the reasons Maryland made the list. She also credits Maryland’s gender-inclusive housing, students sharing the same housing regardless of sex, gender or gender identity, as another reason for Maryland’s LGBT success.
“We’ve gotten very active in the LGBT community on campus,” she says. “The university has made a lot of wonderful recent progress. We’re very proud.”
University of Maryland, College Park also made the list in 2012 and 2013.
Campus Pride bills itself as the leading national organization for creating safer, more LGBT-friendly colleges and universities. In 2007, the national nonprofit launched its LGBT-Friendly Campus Pride Index to serve as a benchmark of LGBT-inclusive policies, programs and practices across the country. For the last seven years, about 600 colleges and universities (public, private, two-year and four-year) have utilized the online assessment tool to improve safety and overall campus climate for LGBT students.
The primary goals of the LGBT-Friendly Campus Pride Index are to establish a national standard for improving the quality of life for LGBT students and allies on college campuses and to assist campuses in becoming more LGBT-friendly. The index rates colleges and universities using a five (highest) to one (lowest) star rating system. A school may choose to “come out” on the Index at anytime. Not all colleges/universities that take the index have chosen to list their information to the public.
This year’s list is here but visit campusprideindex.com for information on more than 400 LGBT-friendly colleges and universities.
|Central Washington University|
|Northern Arizona University|
|Oregon State University|
|Portland State University|
|San Diego State University|
|Southern Illinois University Carbondale|
|Southern Oregon University|
|The Ohio State University|
|The Pennsylvania State University|
|University of California, Berkeley|
|University of California, Los Angeles|
|University of California, Riverside|
|University of California, Santa Barbara|
|University of California, Santa Cruz|
|University of Central Florida|
|University of Chicago|
|University of Illinois at Chicago|
|University of Maryland, College Park|
|University of Massachusetts, Amherst|
|University of Michigan|
|University of Minnesota – Duluth|
|University of Minnesota – Twin Cities|
|University of Oregon|
|University of Pennsylvania|
|University of Rhode Island|
|University of Southern California|
|University of Vermont|
|University of Washington|
|University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee|
|Warren Wilson College|
|Washington State University|
|Washington University in St. Louis|