Friday, September 30

4 Ohio colleges (AGAIN) named to list of “The Absolute Worst Campuses for LGBTQ Youth”

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On Thursday, Campus Pride released their annual list of “The Absolute Worst Campuses for LGBTQ Youth.”

The same four Ohio colleges that appeared on the 2021 list again appear on this 2022 list.

To appear on The Worst List, a campus must have applied for and/or received a Title IX exemption to discriminate against LGBTQ+ students, and/or demonstrated a past history of anti-LGBTQ+ actions, programs and practices.

“All students deserve a college experience where they are welcomed and fully embraced to live, learn and grow – including LGBTQ+ students,” said Shane Windmeyer, executive director of Campus Pride. “#TheWorstList campuses are unsafe, and all youth should be warned and fully aware that they openly discriminate and perpetuate harm.”

The four Ohio colleges listed — with the accompanying text from Campus Pride — were:

Cedarville University in Cedarville, Ohio

Cedarville University has qualified for the Worst List because it has a pending Title IX exemption request which acknowledges the college request to discriminate against its students on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity while still receiving federal funds. Members of its staff have also signed onto the Nashville Statement condemning LGBTQ people and using religion-based bigotry to perpetuate stereotypes and harm toward LGBTQ youth.


Franciscan University of Steubenville in Steubenville, Ohio

Franciscan University of Steubenville has qualified for the Worst List because it holds an exemption to Title IX, allowing the college to discriminate against its students on the basis of gender identity while still receiving federal funds.

This past year, the president of Franciscan University took aim at trans athletes and trans identity in a national syndicated op-ed. A few weeks later, a commencement speaker delivered distinctly anti-trans remarks and a graduating student wore a rainbow flag on her wrist, prompting the university to cut her from their commencement video.


Malone University in Canton, Ohio

Malone University has qualified for the Worst List because it has a demonstrated past history and track record of anti-LGBTQ actions, programs and practices.  The Community Agreement for Sexual Conduct statement reads: “Sex should be exclusively reserved for the marriage relationship, understood as a legal, lifelong commitment between a husband and wife.”

Students at Malone held a sit-in to bring visibility to the resignation of an LGBTQ+ professor and to raise awareness about the lack of safety that some members of the LGBTQ+ community feel on campus.


Ohio Christian University in Circleville, Ohio

Ohio Christian University has qualified for the Worst List because it holds an exemption to Title IX in order to discriminate against its students on the basis of gender identity while still receiving federal funds.

Their Student Handbook currently states:

  • “A faithful interpretation of Scripture affirms the principle that sexual purity honors God and that all forms of sexual intimacy that occur outside the covenant of heterosexual marriage are sinful distortions of the holiness and beauty for which God intended.”
  • “We do not surrender the biblical standard of sexual purity to the prevailing secular culture, nor the definition of “male” and “female” to mean something more or different than an individual’s sex at birth.”
  • “Personal Conduct Rules: Immoral sexual activity (Based on scriptural prohibitions of fornication, adultery, and homosexuality: Romans 1:26-27, Galatians 5:19-21, Leviticus 18)”

Ignite Action:

  • Prospective students and families who are looking for LGBTQ-friendly campuses are encouraged to visit the Campus Pride Index at www.campusprideindex.com.
  • If you or someone you know is experiencing discrimination, bias or involved in a hate crime on a college campus, please report It at this online form.
  • REAP works with students who are advocating for change in the hopes that schools at faith-based will become more safe and affirming places for LGBTQ+ students. And if students are mistreated, harassed, disciplined or expelled, they can turn to REAP for support. Visit their website for more info. 

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The Buckeye Flame amplifies the voices of LGBTQ+ Ohioans to support community and civic empowerment through the creation of engaging content that chronicles our triumphs, struggles, and lived experiences.

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