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Elon named a top-25 LGBTQ-friendly campus

This marks Elon's third year of recognition by the Campus Pride organization.

For a third consecutive year, a national advocacy group has named Elon University among the top American colleges and universities for policies, programs and practices friendly to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students. 

‚ÄčThe top-25 ranking announced on Aug. 28 by Campus Pride, one of the nation's largest educational organizations for LGBTQIA college students and campus groups, places Elon among the "best of the best" colleges and universities and at the top of the list among schools in the South for LGBTQ-friendly policies, programs and practices. Elon received five out of five stars, with Campus Pride noting that the university's Gender and LGBTQIA Center "exists so LGBTQIA and ally students and employees feel respected, safe and valued on campus, so they may fully participate in the full array of academic, co-curricular and leadership experiences offered at Elon University."

"LGBTQ youth and families today want to know what campuses are doing when it comes to inclusive policies, programs and practices. This Best of the Best list highlights the Top 25,’” said Shane Windmeyer, executive director of Charlotte-based Campus Pride and creator of the Campus Pride Index. “These are the campuses leading the way for LGBTQ inclusion and who have come out to support LGBTQ students from the first day of classes through graduation day.”

As the top school in the South for the past three years, prospective students around the country are viewing Elon as a safer space for LGBTQIA students to succeed academically, personally and professionally, said Matthew Antonio Bosch, director of the Gender and LGBTQIA Center at Elon. During a recent national LGBTQIA Student College Fair in Charlotte, Elon's booth was a favorite as prospective students and their families discovered the resources Elon has to offer and inquired about applying for admission, Bosch said. 

“At Elon University, there is no ‘one person’ responsible for LGBTQIA inclusion," Bosch said. "LGBTQIA inclusion is a community effort here, thanks to the advocacy, compassion, and diligence of our students, faculty, staff, alumni and community supporters.”

The Campus Pride Index is based in research on policy, program and practice and is conducted for and by LGBTQ experts in the field of higher education. Each campus updates its index annually and uses the Campus Pride benchmarking tool to make improvements for LGBTQ life on campus.

To be in the Top 25 listing, an institution had to score the highest percentages in the LGBTQ-friendly benchmarks. The listing this year includes colleges with student populations from 800 to over 45,000, public and private schools alike.

The schools listed on the Campus Pride top-25 ranking include the following, in alphabetical order:

Augsburg University – Minneapolis, Minnesota
Elon University — Elon, N.C.
Harvey Mudd College – Claremont, California
Indiana University Bloomington – Bloomington, Indiana
Ithaca College – Ithaca, New York
Kansas State University – Manhattan, Kansas
Macalester College – Saint Paul, Minnesota
Montclair State University – Montclair, New Jersey
The Ohio State University – Columbus, Ohio
The Pennsylvania State University – University Park, Pennsylvania
Portland State University – Portland, Oregon/
Princeton University – Princeton, New Jersey
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey-New Brunswick – New Brunswick, New Jersey
San Diego State University – San Diego, California
Southern Oregon University – Ashland, Oregon
Tufts University – Medford, Massachusetts
University of Colorado at Boulder – Boulder, Colorado
University of Louisville – Louisville, Kentucky
University of Massachusetts Amherst – Amherst, Massachusetts
University of Oregon – Eugene, Oregon
University of Pennsylvania – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
University of Washington – Seattle, Washington
University of Wisconsin – Green Bay – Green Bay, Wisconsin
University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee – Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Washington State University – Pullman, Washington

Owen Covington,
8/28/2017 2:45 PM