Rowan named among friendliest LGBTQIA+ schools

Rowan named among friendliest LGBTQIA+ schools


Rowan University has been named to two exclusive lists honoring colleges and universities across the U.S. that have policies that are welcoming to the LGBTQIA+ community.

Kirkland, Wash.-based SR Education Group, which produces a number of online guides, ranked Rowan 28 out of 60 LGBTQIA+ friendly colleges and universities included on the list.

Announcing the results June 20, SR Education Group officials said the 2018 Best and Most Affordable colleges for LGBTQ Students incorporate data provided by Campus Pride, a nonprofit organization that assists colleges in improving their support and resources for LGBTQ students. The Campus Pride Index rates schools based on a five-star scale that incorporates eight LGBTQ-friendly factors. Schools considered for the LGBTQ-Friendly list have been awarded four or more stars and (offer) at least 15 online degree options.

On June 28, Affordable Colleges Online also named Rowan one of the Most LGBTQ-Friendly Colleges in 2018.

The acronym LGBTQIA+ (sometimes expressed as LGBTQ) stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning, intersex, asexual and other sexualities, sexes, and genders that aren't included in those letters.

Rowan Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students Richard Jones said inclusion on the list reiterates what the University’s students, faculty, administration and staff already know – that Rowan encourages and promotes diversity and inclusivity.

“We honor every member of our community regardless of race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age, gender, country of origin or any other personal identifier,” Jones said. “To be recognized by SR Education Group as a kind, welcoming, caring community gives us one more reason to be #RowanPROUD.”

Gardy Guiteau, director of Rowan’s office of Social Justice, Inclusion, and Conflict Resolution, which houses the LGBTQIA+ Center, said the University has taken a number of steps to insure that all services are available to, and inclusive of, LGBTQIA+ students including: establishing a center to support students with physical space and ongoing educational/community building events, counseling through the Wellness Center with experts in LGBTQIA+ issues, and the development and implementation of a Preferred Name Policy.

“The most recent accolade is due in part to the work of Rowan’s Office of Residential Learning and University Housing, which this year implemented a Gender Inclusive Housing Policy,” Guiteau said.

In addition, Guiteau said, the Wellness Center has an active committee that works to stay ahead of LGBTQIA+ issues to help ensure that all classes, clubs, activities and programs are open and welcoming to LGBTQIA+ students.