Educate yourself and voice your opinion on the Hollins transgender policy.

Other Womens College’s Policies

Hollins University has been quoted to have a transgender policy that is “the strictest one they have seen at an American college.” (The Chronicle of Higher Education) So how do we compare?  While most Women’s colleges do not seem to have a written policy for transgender students like Hollins does, these are some examples of women’s college’s who have created or acknowledged (at least in interviews) their own policies.

Smith College:

  • Official Public Statement?: Yes
  • Transgender Inclusive?: Yes
  • Altered Constitution?: Yes
  • Gender Neutral Housing?: No
  • Statement: “Like most colleges and universities today (indeed, like society at large), Smith College has a diverse and dynamic student body that includes individuals who identify as transgendered. Some do so for intellectual or political reasons, in order to challenge prevailing gender norms in our society; others feel that their birth sex does not truly represent who they are. Students at Smith, whatever their gender or sexual identity, are diverse, accomplished, and various in their views. Whereas the exploration of sexuality, sexual orientation and gender identity was once a very private matter, it is a much more visible and public part of contemporary campus cultures. Students coming to college today, whether at Smith, Yale, Princeton, Wesleyan, Wellesley or elsewhere, feel comfortable publicly exploring a range of identities and behaviors.  Is Smith still a women’s college? Absolutely. As a women’s college, Smith only considers female applicants for undergraduate admission. And like other women’s colleges, Smith is a place where women are able to explore who they are in an environment that is safe and accepting.” (Taken from Smith College’s .edu website) “Smith does not track statistics related to the gender identity, gender expression or sexual orientation of its students. Once admitted, any student who completes the college’s graduation requirements will be awarded a degree.” (www.smith.edu › Offices › Institutional Diversity & Equity)

Mount Holyoke:

  • Official Public Statement?: No
  • Transgender Inclusive?: Yes
  • Altered Constitution?: Yes
  • Gender Neutral Housing?: Yes

“Only women are enrolled. Banks said that in the past four years or so students have begun the transitioning process while enrolled, but none have had full surgery. She added that some students have asked to be considered gender-neutral, and ‘we have made sure that our language and practice reflected our value that they be allowed to express their gender identity freely.‘” (Quote from an article written by Allie Grasgreen for Insidehighered.com about Mount Holyoke’s transgender policy)
“‘Similarly, the College’s President asserts that trans students do not detract from the mission of the College. One FTM student at Mount Holyoke agreed with the President because these students were “born female, raised female, conditioned as female and experienced life as a female for most of their lives,” and therefore can share in the experience of being a woman. The Mount Holyoke constitution, like Smith’s, was amended in 2005 to replace the word “she” with “student.” However, unlike Smith’s amendment, Mount Holyoke’s was fairly secretive.'” (taken from “The Changing Faces of Women’s Colleges Striking a Balance Between Transgender Right’s and Women’s Colleges Right to Exclude”,Cathy Perifimos” Cardozo Journal of Law & Gender

Wellesley College:

  • Official Public Statement?: Yes
  • Transgender Inclusive?: Yes
  • Altered Constitution?: ??
  • Gender Neutral Housing?: No
  • Statement: “The Wellesley College community’s commitment to providing a safe and welcoming environment for its lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and intersex students is apparent every day, in every corner of the College.”…”Providing a comfortable, supportive environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and intersex students and their allies is indicative of Wellesley’s serious commitment to nurturing our community’s diversity.” (Taken from Wellesley’s .edu website)

Barnard College:

  • Official Public Statement?: No
  • Transgender Inclusive?: Case by Case Basis
  • Altered Consitution?: No
  • Gender Neutral Housing?: No

“Director of Public Affairs Suzanne Trimel said that Barnard doesn’t keep tabs on its students’ gender as they progress through the College,just as the school doesn’t keep track of their students’ sexuality. Although President Shapiro opposes the idea of Barnard wholeheartedly embracing a transgender population, she pledges commitment to the individual needs of students who, once at Barnard, undergo a gender transition. In fact, that seems to be Barnard’s unofficial policy; a dedication to individual needs on a case-by-case basis, but a refusal to acknowledge transgender students as an official group or distinct problem within the school.” (taken from “The Changing Faces of Women’s Colleges Striking a Balance Between Transgender Right’s and Women’s Colleges Right to Exclude”,Cathy Perifimos” Cardozo Journal of Law & Gender)

Bryn Mawr College:

  • Official Public Statement?: No
  • Transgender Inclusive: Yes/Case by Case
  • Altered Constitution?: No
  • Gender Neutral Housing?: No

“Regarding admission policies concerning transgender students, Bryn Mawr’s prerogative is to admit female students exclusively. If a situation arises in which an applicant’s sex is inexact, the college will approach the conundrum individually to better comprehend the nature of the student’s circumstances. The policy stresses that the college’s guidelines to only admit female students would also be enforced.”…Bryn Mawr does support its students in their potential decisions to be transgendered upon their classification as a ‘Bryn Mawr student.’ The problem lies in the college’s viewpoint towards transgendered students prior to their applications being submitted. (taken from http://gandt.blogs.brynmawr.edu- from a course page taught by Anne Dale and Laura Blankenship)

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