The efforts of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning (LGBTQ) Resource Center have led to the University of New Mexico’s national recognition by BestColleges.com as one of the Top 30 Best Colleges in the nation for LGBTQ Students for providing inclusivity and resources to LGBTQ and non-conforming students.
“The LGBTQ Resource Center has always had the intersection of identity as a core organizing value,” said Alma Rosa Silva-Bañuelos, director, UNM LGBTQ Resource Center. “We honor all our community identities and work to provide services and resources to support ones whole self.”
The Best Colleges.com list examines colleges that provide an exceptional level of support for students of various gender and sexual identities. They have referred to the Campus Pride index, which is a comprehensive national rating system that measures LGBT-friendly campus life. Campus Pride takes an exhaustive and multifaceted measurement approach, considering eight LGBT-inclusive factors to reach a measurement. The listing also includes descriptions of unique campus resources that provide support to students of various gender and sexual identities.
“Given that the Center is less than four years old, it is a major accomplishment that we have emerged as one of the top universities responding to the needs of the LGBTQ student population,” said Dr. Jozi De Leon, vice president, Equity and Inclusion. “It couldn’t be done without the leadership of Director Alma Rosa Silva- Bañuelos and her staff, who demonstrate their dedication through program development, activities that engage students and services specific to the needs of the LGBTQ Community.”
According to BestColleges.com, the LGBTQ Resource Center at UNM was selected due to the significant array of services provided, such as hosting awareness events, conducting Safe Zone training, providing safe sex resources, and hosting educational lectures at cafes. Students can consult the Queer Course List to find curricula with an LGBTQ focus. Faculty and staff members who are dedicated to creating LGBTQ-friendly spaces have added their contact information to the Out & Ally List to serve as campus resources.
“We are grateful to all our partners across UNM’s campus for supporting the LGBTQ community,” said Silva- Bañuelos. “It takes a village to bring about safety, education, advocacy and visibility for a community that has been discriminated against over time.”
The 30 colleges on the list are not ranked in any particular order and all meet the methodology requirements described earlier. For a complete list, visit: Best Colleges for LGBT Students.