19 Women’s Colleges Have Formal Policies to Admit at Least Some Trans Students

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19 women’s colleges have formal policies that admit at least some trans students:

Agnes Scott College: admits “students who were assigned female at birth, as well as those who were assigned male or female at birth, but who now identify as female, transgender, agender, gender fluid or non-binary.”

Alverno College: “admits students who live and identify as female regardless of biological sex” and students assigned female at birth “who identify as non-binary or gender non-conforming.” “Students who begin their college experience at Alverno identifying as female but at some time begin identifying as male, non-binary or gender non-conforming are invited to remain enrolled through graduation.”

Barnard College: “accepts applications from those who consistently live and identify as women. Applicants assigned female at birth who now identify as male [or “who identify as non-binary or gender non-conforming”] are not eligible for admission.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

Bennett College: “admits self-identified women and people assigned female at birth who do not fit into the gender binary . . . Bennett College does not accept applications men. Those assigned female at birth who identify as men are not eligible for admission.”

Bryn Mawr College: accepts applications from “all individuals who have identified and continue to identify as women (including cisgender and trans women), intersex individuals who do not identify as male, individuals assigned female at birth who have not taken medical or legal steps to identify as male, and individuals assigned female at birth who do not identify within the gender binary.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

Cedar Crest College: “applicants to the traditional undergraduate program who were assigned female at birth and/or applicants who self-identify as women are eligible to apply for admission.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

College of Saint Benedict: “will consider for undergraduate admission those applicants who consistently live and identify as women, regardless of the gender assigned to them at birth.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

Hollins College: “Hollins accepts applications from those who consistently live and identify as women.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

Mills College: accepts applications from “self-identified women and people assigned female at birth who do not fit into the gender binary.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there. Also see the Mills College Report on Inclusion of Transgender and Gender Fluid Students: Best Practices, Assessment and Recommendations.

Mount Holyoke College: accepts applications from all trans-identified individuals, whether assigned female or male at birth (i.e., it will consider anyone, except someone who is assigned make and who identifies as male).

Russell Sage College: “Students who self-identify as “woman” at the time of their application may apply to RSC or SCA [Sage College of Albany]. Students who identify as “male” at the time of their application may only apply for acceptance to SCA. Students who identify as non-gender conforming (NGC) at the time of their application may apply to the college that more closely aligns their gender identity and expressions.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

Scripps College: “will consider all applicants who indicate their legal sex as female submitted through the Common Application, in addition to applicants who self-identity as women.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

Simmons College: “All applicants to the undergraduate program who were assigned female at birth and/or applicants who self-identify as women are eligible to apply for admission.” This means that the college will accept trans men. Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

Smith College: accepts applications from individuals “who were assigned male at birth but identify as women . . . Those assigned female at birth but who now identify as male [or as genderqueer or gender non-binary] are not eligible for admission.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

Spelman College: accepts “students who consistently live and self-identify as women, regardless of their gender assignment at birth. Spelman does not admit male students, including students who self-identify and live consistently as men, regardless of gender assignment at birth. If a woman is admitted and transitions to male while a student at Spelman, the College will permit that student to continue to matriculate at and graduate from Spelman.”

St. Catherine University: “will continue to consider all individuals who identify as women for admission to our undergraduate College for Women regardless of gender assigned at birth, as well as non-binary and genderqueer students . . . Should a student undergo gender transition while enrolled in the College for Women, individualized support and resources are available to assist that student in discerning best options for degree attainment. The student will be welcome to remain in the College for Women.”

Stephens College: will “admit and enroll students who were not born female, but who identify and live as women; those students will need to provide legal documentation that they are legally women or that they are transitioning to female.” “The College will also continue to admit and enroll students who were born female but who identify as nonbinary.”

Wellesley College: will consider for admission any applicant who lives as a woman and consistently identifies as a woman; therefore, candidates assigned male at birth who identify as women are eligible to apply for admission. Those assigned female at birth who identify as men are not eligible for consideration for admission.” Individuals assigned female at birth who identify as non-binary are eligible to apply if they “feel they belong in our community of women.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

Wesleyan College: “will consider for admission all applicants who consistently self-identify and live as women. Application materials must support this self-identification, and our admission counselors will help guide prospective students who need assistance with this process.” Individuals assigned female at birth who self-identify as men while at the institution are able to continue to earn a degree there.

One women’s college is in the process of developing trans admissions policies:

Bay Path College

Three women’s colleges have formal policies that explicitly ban trans men from remaining at the institution:

Bennett College: “If a student decides to self-identify as a male, the student will no longer be eligible to receive a degree from the College.”

Converse College: “If a currently enrolled, undergraduate student in the women’s college initiates sex reassignment from female to male (as defined by the College below) at any point during enrollment in the women’s college at Converse, the student will not be permitted to continue attending the undergraduate women’s program at Converse beyond the conclusion of the term in which Converse determines that sex reassignment has occurred. The College considers sex reassignment to have occurred when an undergraduate student “self identifies” as male and initiates any of the following processes: 1) hormone therapy with the intent to transform from female to male, 2) any surgical process (procedure) to transform from female to male, or 3) legally changes state or federal gender identity with the intent of identifying as male.”

Stephens College: “A student whose sex or gender identity transitions after enrollment such that it is no longer consistent with the College’s policies will be allowed to remain at the institution only to complete the current semester. Evidence of such transition may include self-identification as a man; change of legal name with the intent of identifying as a man; or physical transition to male associated with hormone therapy or a surgical process.”

Men’s Colleges:

Morehouse College, the largest historically men’s college, will begin admitting trans men in 2020, but will not allow trans women who are admitted to remain at the college. “Once admitted to the College, all students are expected to self-identify as men throughout their education at Morehouse. If a student transitions from a man to a woman, that student will no longer be eligible to matriculate at Morehouse.”

Meet the Clearinghouse Coordinator

Genny Beemyn is the director of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst’s Stonewall Center, the LGBTQIA+ campus resource center. Genny has published and spoken extensively on the experiences and needs of trans people, particularly the lives of nonbinary college students. They have written or edited eleven books/journal issues, including A Queer Capital: A History of Gay Life in Washington, D.C. (Routledge, 2014) and The Lives of Transgender People (Columbia University Press, 2011) with Sue Rankin. Genny’s most recent book is an anthology, Trans People in Higher Education (SUNY Press, 2019). They are currently writing Campus Queer: Addressing the Needs of LGBTQ+ College Students with Mickey Eliason for Johns Hopkins University Press. In addition to being the coordinator of the Clearinghouse, Genny is also an editorial board member of the Journal of LGBT Youth, the Journal of Bisexuality, and the Journal of Homosexuality. They have a Ph.D. in African American Studies and Master’s degrees in African American Studies, American Studies, and Higher Education Administration.

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