Transgender people within higher education continue to be an invisible, often forgotten community. Only about 10% of colleges and universities have trans-inclusive nondiscrimination statements. Research suggests that trans people face higher rates of harassment when compared to cisgender, lesbian, gay, and bisexual people, and are three times more likely to fear for their physical safety on campus. In the last decade, however, a number of campuses have become leaders in creating trans-friendly policies, programs, and practices.
As Benedictine institutions, CSB and SJU are committed to the value of respect for persons regardless of gender identity or conformity. As Catholic institutions, CSB and SJU seek to recognize and affirm the importance of gender identity. As a college for women and an undergraduate college for men, CSB and SJU are each committed to a single sex mission.
As part of the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) Open Pathways Quality Initiative for re-accreditation, the SJU and CSB Vice Presidents for Student Development were charged to organize and lead a research-based task force that will guide the development and implementation of "transgender policy and practice for the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University via a collective process thus preparing the institutions to educate and serve transgender and gender non-conforming students in ways consistent with the Catholic and Benedictine character of CSB and SJU, and the single sex mission of each institution."
We report on our task force findings and seek thoughtful and constructive discussion on the policies we are recommending.
Geller, Mary and Mullin, Doug OSB, "Developing policies for gender non-conforming students" (2016). Forum Lectures. 151.