WEST LAFAYETTE — Purdue University has been named the "Best College for LGBTQ+ Students" in Indiana and among the top 20 in the country.
The West Lafayette campus found itself with a high ranking on BestColleges and Campus Pride's listing for 2021, which were recently released in time for Pride Month.
The rankings were found by combining BestColleges academic and affordability metrics for school rankings with the Campus Pride index score for each college. Campus Pride considers eight inclusive factors for each measurement, which includes campus resources that provide support to students of various gender and sexual identities.
Purdue received a five-star rating on the Campus Pride Index, including a five out of five-star rating in LGBTQ student life, LGBTQ academic life, and recruitment and retention efforts.
Purdue's LGBTQ Center, which was founded in 2012, offers events, a resource library, and mental health and support services.
The university also has several opportunities for LGBTQ+ students to engage with communities, faculty and staff through programs like Purdue Employee Pride, and taking courses in its LGBT and sexuality studies program, which includes a six-week sex and history program abroad.
“We’ve seen over the past eight years phenomenal growth and participation in the center,” Lowell Kane, the director of student engagement and belonging and director of the LGBTQ Center, stated. “We have seen an expansion of programs and services as well as policies and practices that illustrate Purdue’s commitment to welcoming and affirming everybody.”
“Every year we welcome more students who use the center’s resources and programs to enhance their Purdue experience and enrich their own lives and the lives and experiences of the LGBTQ community,” Kane said.
Those interested in looking at the BestColleges and Campus Pride's listings can click here.
A 2020 study by the American College Health Association (ACHA) found that, out of a sample of more than 8,000 undergraduate students, 21% identified as gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans, asexual, pansexual, or questioning, according to BestColleges.
BestColleges says the top five features families should be looking for in an LGBTQ-friendly college are: LGBTQ+ student clubs and organizations, inclusive campus facilities, safe zones and other ally-focused training programs, an inclusive student code of conduct, and LGBTQ+ advisory groups.