GW students are known for accepting their LGBT peers, and two separate occurrences recently solidified the University’s increasing support of the LBGT community. When the University added an LGBT minor to its curriculum, the institution itself demonstrated that it was willing to listen to students and recognize this field of study. When Kye Allums, a member of the women’s basketball team, announced his decision to be recognized as a man, Allums showed that he felt comfortable enough on campus to make his decision public. Both of these examples signify the continuation of a trend toward acceptance and encouragement of students in the LGBT community.
The University’s move, along with Allums’ announcement, are significant to our campus for a variety of reasons, though the most positive aspect has to be that it shows our campus facilitates a positive environment for students of the LGBT community. Students lobbied the University for an LGBT minor for more than a year, and the University finally recognized students’ efforts. Additionally, the formation of a minor means a major in the field should be the next step, and should follow in about two years.
Along with the institutional move to create a new field of study at GW, Allums’ decision to share his story with the media and the community also indicates that GW provides a welcoming and accepting environment for LGBT students. Allums, a junior shooting guard on the women’s basketball team, identified himself as a lesbian in high school but announced Monday that he was transgender. This makes Allums the first transgender Division I NCAA athlete, and we applaud his decision to publicize his story and that he felt comfortable enough on campus to tell his teammates, fellow students and the general public.
Our campus should be a place where anyone will feel welcome, and the fact that GW is fostering this sense of acceptance is something we want to see more of in the future. We hope that this trend continues, and that prospective Colonials of the LGBT community and outside of that community will view the LGBT minor and Kye Allums’ decision as indicators of the accepting atmosphere on campus.
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