This year, Kenyon received a 4.5 out of five on the Campus Pride Index, a resource for colleges and students that highlights LGBTQ-inclusive work in higher education across the country. This is a 1.5 point increase from last year.
The Campus Pride Index is operated by Campus Pride, a national nonprofit organization for campus groups working to create a safer college environment for LGBTQ students. It serves as a “tool for assisting campuses in learning ways to improve their LGBTQ campus life and ultimately shape the education experience to be more inclusive,” according to its website. It also helps prospective students assess how LGBTQ-friendly a college is in terms of policies, programs and practices.
The index takes into account eight different factors of campus life, including LGBTQ policy inclusion, support and institutional commitment, housing and campus safety.
Earlier in the semester, Assistant Director of the Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (ODEI) Timothy Bussey updated Kenyon’s registration to include recent programming, which was what brought the index score up to 4.5.
“A 4.5 out of five is really a very impressive score for the College to have,” Bussey said. “That is on par with some very major institutions that have entire centers dedicated to LGBTQ+ student life, and so ODEI is very happy to see such an improvement and such a strong score on this index.”
Bussey noted that one area of improvement that ODEI was already looking into is making the academic curriculum more inclusive. He said that ODEI will continue to not only meet but also exceed these expectations.
“My ideal would be five out of five and that’s what I’m working toward,” Bussey said. “But at the end of the day, this isn’t the only thing that’s going to guide us. Really, we want to listen to what the students need and that’s what’s been such a strong guiding force.”