By THE BUCKEYE FLAME
Two Ohio universities have been named to the “2022 Best of the Best LGBTQ+-Friendly Colleges and Universities” list.
The list is compiled by Campus Pride, the leading national nonprofit for student leaders and campus groups working to create a safer college environment for LGBTQ+ students. Recognized institutions have achieved the highest percentages in the LGBTQ-friendly benchmarks for policies, programs, and practices in the Campus Pride Index, a national benchmarking tool.
For the third year in a row, Kent State University found itself on the top list. Some of the resources offered at Kent include the QUEST Mentorship Program, LGBTQ+ Library, LGBTQ+ Emergency Fund, LGBTQ Studies Minor, University Counseling Services, University Legal Services, Universal Restroom Map, the chosen name change process and inclusive housing. .
“Being named to this list indicates an ongoing commitment to serving the needs of our LGBTQ+ community here at Kent State,” said Lamar R. Hylton, Ph.D., senior vice president of student affairs at Kent State. “I am incredibly proud of the work coming out of the LGBTQ+ Center as well as the work of our campus and community partners.”
After years of earning a 5-star rating on the Campus Pride Index, Ohio State University has now climbed onto the best-of-the-best list. OSU offers a wide range of LGBTQ+ services and support, including on-campus health and wellness programs, mental health support, crisis support, and LGBTQ-specific sexual health information.
Although there are over 15 different LGBTQ+ student groups currently on The Ohio State University roster, in the beginning there was only one. In 1971, the OSU Gay Liberation Front was founded, but was denied official recognition from the university.
Under a new administration, the Gay Activists Alliance was officially approved and they were granted office space in 1973. They established a speakers bureau in 1974, sponsored the first ever gay rights rally in downtown ‘Ohio in 1976, changed their name to the Gay Alliance in 1978, and sponsored a “Gay Student Orientation” in 1980. In 1985, they changed their name to the Gay and Lesbian Alliance and held the first “Coming Out Day” from Ohio State in 1989.
Many other colleges in Ohio have received high Campus Pride Index rankings, including Baldwin Wallace University (4 stars), Case Western Reserve University (4 ½ stars), Cleveland State University (4 stars), College of Mount St. Joseph, (4 stars), College of Wooster (4 stars), University of Miami (4 stars) and University of Toledo (4 stars).
This article was republished from The Buckeye Flame, a platform dedicated to amplifying the voices of LGBTQ+ Ohioans to support community and civic empowerment through the creation of engaging content that chronicles their triumphs, struggles and their lived experiences. For more LGBTQ+ news, visit thebuckeyeflame.com.