Why are diversity and inclusion important on campus?

The way students experience their campus environment impacts their learning and development [1], [2]. When universities fail to create an inclusive environment for minority students, both minority and majority students are negatively affected. There is compelling evidence that diversity among students and faculty is crucially important to the intellectual and social development of all students [3-5].

What is the campus climate like for LGBTQ+ students and faculty?

Even though recent years have seen significant advances in LGBTQ equality in the U.S. through legislation and social acceptance, research shows that LGBTQ students and faculty on college campuses still experience exclusion and discrimination. The following examples taken from a
survey of 5,100 college students, faculty and administrators illustrate this problem [6]:

• 29% of LGBTQ students and faculty experienced harassment and discrimination within the last year

• 20% of LGBTQ respondents feared for their physical safety on campus

• 37% of students were not comfortable in the classroom

• 30% of LGBTQ individuals seriously considered leaving their institution due to negative experiences and perceptions’



[1] Pascarella, E. T. & Terenzini, P. T., How college affects students: A third decade of researchvol. 2. San Francisco: Josey Bass, (2005).
[2] Pascarella, E. T. & Terenzini,P. T., How college affects students: Findings and insights from twenty years of research. vol. 2. San Francisco: Josey Bass, (1991).
[3] Gurin,P., “The expert report of Patricia Gurin,” (1998).
[4] Reason,R. D.   Cox,B. E.  Quaye, B. R. L. & Terenzini,P. T., “Faculty and institutional factors that promote student encounters with difference in first-­‐year courses.,” Review of Higher Education, vol. 33, pp. 391-­‐414, (2010).
[5] Smith, H.  Parr, R.  Woods, R.  Bauer, B., & Abraham,T., “Five years after graduation: Undergraduate cross-­‐group friendships and multicultural curriculum predict current attitudes and activities,” Journal of College Student Development, vol. 51, pp. 385-­‐402, (2010).
[6] Rankin, S.  Weber, G.  Blumenfeld, W. &  Frazer, S., “2010 State of higher education for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people,” ed: Campus Pride, (2010).