LGBTQIA identified students’ academic success
LGBTQIA identified students are shown nationally to be at greater risk for a host of factors that impact their academic success. Improving overall student retention is a critical goal of the university and one the Commission fully supports.
Improving the campus climate for LGBTQIA individuals
Creating a positive, safe, and inclusive working and learning environment for all of the university’s members is a core value of the institution.
Transgender access & support
There remain barriers that are unique to transgender individuals which inhibit their ability to fully participate in the academic and work environment.
LGBTQIA identified faculty/staff recruitment & retention
Examining barriers to faculty/staff performance and well-being is a key component in reaching the institution’s goals of employing a qualified and diverse cohort of academics and professionals
In May 2012 the LGBTQIA Task Force held the first Rainbow Convocation at NAU for LGBTQIA students. It was held in Ashurst Auditorium with Robbie Bergman as the keynote speaker and recognized 20 student graduates. Rainbow Convocation continues as a collaboration between the Commission, Office of LGBTQA Support & Resources, and the Office of Inclusion & Multicultural Services.
Office of LGBTQA support & resources
After advocating for the establishment of a LGBTQIA oriented support office, this resource was created in the Fall of 2011. Initially led by a part-time Coordinator, the office was later granted a full-time Coordinator, with graduate student and student interns. In 2012 the office was officially incorporated into the Office of Inclusion & Multicultural Services with a Program Coordinator (Sr.) at the helm.
Increased housing options
Members of the LGBTQIA Task Force partnered with staff in Housing & Residence Life to provide increased options for LGBQA and specifically transgender housing. In the Fall of 2012, Gender Inclusive Housing was first offered in Gabaldon Hall and the LGBTQIA Living Learning Community was offered for first year students in Cowden Hall.
Queer studies minor
Members of the LGBTQIA Task Force partnered with faculty and staff in the Department of Women and Gender Studies to offer NAU’s first LGBTQIA oriented minor, fulfilling a long standing goal. The minor received official approval in the Spring of 2013.
In January 2014, the Commission officially created a scholarship fund to provide support to active members of the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer) Northern Arizona University community. The Commission continues to seek donations so that we may reach our $25,000 goal and become a permanently endowed scholarship.