For college students who self-identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ+), many barriers exist to a positive campus climate, including social exclusion, the threat of physical violence, relationships with faculty, mental health issues, and institutional othering that social workers need to take into consideration when working with LGBTQ+ clients. Through this qualitative action research study, guided by social norms theory, one central research question, and four sub-questions, the experiences and attitudes of LGBTQ+ students were studied by gathering qualitative data from a sample of student members of a nonprofit that serves LGBTQ+ youth. Data was collected in the form of one focus group of six individuals and 15 interviews ranging from 45 to 60 minutes. The findings of this study contribute to the field of social work and education by serving as a basis for policy development or modification to address the needs of LGBTQ+ students. The participants gave concrete solutions to what would make them feel safe, welcome, and, affirmed on their campus. These solutions were presented to a board of directors, with the researcher’s recommendations. The board will then decide how to address and disseminate the findings and recommendations. The findings of this study have brought new knowledge to campus leaders regarding both positive and negative aspects of expressing their gender or sexual identity on campus.
|Commitee:||Ersing, Robin, McLaughlin, Thomas Chalmers|
|Department:||School of Public Service Leadership|
|School Location:||United States -- Minnesota|
|Source:||DAI-A 82/2(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||LGBTQ studies, Higher education, Social work|
|Keywords:||Campus culture, Higher education, LGBTQ+, Safety, Social work, Welcome|
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