HSU Named Gay-Friendly School

Humboldt State University is one of 19 ‘five-star’ schools nationwide lauded for gay-friendliness by Campus Pride, a Charlotte, N.C. non-profit that promotes safe and harmonious environments for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students.

HSU received the highest ranking along with counterparts San Diego State, UC Berkeley, UCLA, Princeton and Syracuse University on the non-profit’s new 2010-11Campus Climate Index. It lists more than 230 evaluations at www.campusclimateindex.org on LGBT policies, programs and practices at HSU and scores of other schools.

Campus Pride ranks Humboldt State a five-star institution in multiple categories, including LGBT academic studies (race and gender issues), social awareness events and activities, permanent organizations like the campus MultiCultural Center and in housing and residence life.

In the latter, for example, HSU established a gender-neutral housing policy in 2005 for LGBT roommates who choose an ‘intentional living community’ to affirm their social and cultural experiences in designated living quarters in one of the residence halls. Currently about 35 students participate.

HSU staff provide ally and ‘safe space’ training to students, faculty and fellow staff. The program will be put on a sustaining basis in the upcoming academic year and expanded in collaboration with faculty and the in-house Office of Diversity and Inclusion.

“I believe we’ve received this recognition based on the hard work of students, faculty, staff and the administration to make HSU an inclusive learning community,” President Rollin Richmond said. “These efforts include initiatives such as the establishment of the Multicultural Queer Studies minor, creation of the Office of Diversity & Inclusion and the development of LGBT Ally and Safe Space training for both the on- and off-campus communities. We are proud of the leadership provided by our faculty, staff and students to institutionalize inclusive excellence for our students, alumni and our communities. I am personally a strong supporter of these efforts because I consider them to be issues of basic ethical fairness.”

Founded in 2001, Campus Pride volunteers and students work on LGBT leadership development, educational outreach to combat bigotry and pertinent service and support programs. Information is posted at www.campuspride.org.