Campus Pride concluded the year serving nearly 1300 campus groups at various colleges and universities (public, private, 2-year and 4-year campuses). Thousands of student leaders across the country joined our national network to make college campuses safer, more inclusive places for LGBT people. From new publications to innovative projects, high-profile dialogues to transforming LGBT student retention efforts, Campus Pride continues to be the national leader on LGBT issues in higher education.
“Since 2001, Campus Pride has witnessed tremendous success as a pioneering organization in higher education for LGBT issues. Our online tools and resources have transformed college campus communities, provided ongoing support for LGBT and ally young adult leadership and have led to successful advocacy for LGBT-friendly policies, programs and practices,” said Shane Windmeyer, Executive Director and Founder of Campus Pride. “As highlighted in this ‘Year in Review,’ 2012 has been a banner year for us — whether it be the growth of the Campus Pride Index or Camp Pride; the publishing of the LGBTQ National College Athlete Report; or the national role in finding ‘common ground’ with Chick-fil-A. It has been a year full of growth and success and we thank all our supporters.”
Highlights & Accomplishments:
During 2012, we offered new and updated resources for prospective LGBT students and their families, including the Campus Pride Index, the Campus Pride LGBT-Friendly National College Fair Program and Best of the Best college lists. The number of institutions in the Campus Pride Index for LGBT-Friendly Colleges and Universities increased to over 350, and the College Fair Program expanded to six cities nationwide. We released the first-ever Campus Pride “Top 25 LGBT-Friendly Colleges and Universities” with the Huffington Post and partnered with The Advocate to release the landmark “Top 10 Trans-Friendly Colleges and Universities,” the first trans-specific benchmarking tool of its kind. In addition to benefiting prospective students and their families, these resources are also invaluable for institutions striving to become more LGBT-friendly.
In October, Campus Pride launched a redesigned website at www.CampusPride.org. The site boasts many new online features, updated resources and is easily accessible via social media connections to college students across the country. Alongside the updated website, we announced our new Speakers Bureau, offering a dozen of the very best LGBT and ally artists, entertainers and speakers. All of these speakers work to support Campus Pride and donate a portion of their booking fees back to Campus Pride to support our mission.
The Out to Play Project, designed to address anti-LGBT slurs, bias and conduct in sports, was launched this past summer with a top 10 list of LGBT-friendly college athletic programs, praising campuses with positive climates for LGBT athletes. Campus Pride was also a key partner in the first ever Nike LGBT Sports Summit this June. The summit was designed to bring together advocacy organizations working to end homophobia and transphobia in sports. Last fall, Campus Pride’s Q Research Institute for Higher Education completed the Campus Pride 2012 LGBTQ National College Athlete Report, the most comprehensive report to date documenting the experiences of LGBT student-athletes competing in NCAA sports. (The report is available for pre-order now.) These efforts are prompting vitally important conversations about what it means to be LGBT in college athletics and how the NCAA can work to improve sports culture.
Our LGBT and ally student leadership development efforts continued in 2012 with programs such as Stop the Hate Bias and Hate Crime Prevention trainings, the Campus Pride Queer It Up! Action Institute at the Creating Change conference and the Campus Pride and HRC Carolinas Leadership and Action Summit for Young Adults. Our annual summer leadership camp, Camp Pride, attracted over 60 colleges students and advisors from across the country for a five-day immersive leadership training and social justice education program featuring guests like marriage equality advocate Zach Wahls and Mara Keisling, the Executive Director of the National Center for Transgender Equality. Camp Pride students returned to their campuses with action plans to implement gender neutral bathrooms and housing, organize LGBT students on religiously-affiliated campuses, create Safe Space programs for athletic departments and more. Additionally, Camp Pride 2011 was featured in the documentary “Legalize Gay: The Civil Rights Movement of a Generation,” which premiered on Logo TV in May.
Campus Pride was in the national spotlight for several other issues during 2012, including a continuing dialogue with Dan Cathy, the President and COO of Chick-fil-A, related to LGBT student safety and campus climate at institutions with ties to the anti-LGBT franchise; the long-awaited university recognition of a LGBT student organization at the Catholic-affiliated University of Notre Dame; and the University of Iowa’s historic decision to add optional questions about gender identity and sexual orientation to its admissions forms, becoming the first public university in the country to do so. Alongside Elmhurst College, Iowa’s announcement set a notable precedent for universities to actively exercise responsibility for the retention and academic success of LGBT students. In November, Campus Pride also announced an exciting long-term strategic partnership with the Ben Cohen StandUp Foundation, an anti-bullying social justice organization.
Another highlight from 2012 was a September event at Vice President Biden’s residence to celebrate the next generation of LGBT leaders. Camp Pride alumni Nikita Burks, Dominique Gant, and Jess McDonald were in attendance in Washington, D.C. for a LGBT policy roundtable and the evening BBQ. The year ended on a high note with the an announcement by Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation that Campus Pride would be one of nine partnering organizations for the Winter/Spring 2013 Born Brave Bus Tour. The bus tour will provide a safe space for youth to celebrate their individuality and be the person they were born to be. Campus Pride youth ambassadors will be present at the pre-concert tailgate events in concert cities across the US.
Campus Pride is proud of the many accomplishments that 2012 held for our organization and our national network of student leaders across the country, and we know that 2013 will be an even better year for positive change and progress! Thank you to everyone who helped make 2012 a success! Cheers to 2013!