The Council for Collaborative Action, a body comprised of student leaders from a diverse mix of cultural, academic and extracurricular student groups, stands with Blue Devils United in proposing that Duke adopt the practice of asking an LGBTQ identity question on our application for undergraduate admission. This practice would offer several benefits to the LGBTQ community at Duke and the University as a whole.
Providing an opportunity for LGBTQ students to self-identify during the college admissions process is the safest, most secure and efficient way to monitor rates of admission, yield and retention of LGBTQ students. At present, this information is not available like it is for other minority populations on campus. This data will prove invaluable for offices like the Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity in their efforts to provide an inviting, supportive and safe environment for LGBTQ students. According to BDU, this data collection will facilitate the connection between the University’s resources and the students whom they benefit, a practice currently in place for Catholic students, as one example.
BDU also indicated to the CCA that since the LGBTQ community differs structurally from other identity markers, the implementation of an optional LGBTQ identity question would not offer any applicants unfair advantages.
The CCA finds BDU’s initiative to be insightful, balanced and productive. We urge the administration to implement these recommendations, and we ask the student body to support our LGBTQ community by supporting the proposal.
Marcus Benning, Trinity '14
Chair, Council for Collaborative Action