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University of Iowa Becomes First Public U.S. College to Include Questions About Sexual Orientation on Its Admissions Forms

Illustration for article titled University of Iowa Becomes First Public U.S. College to Include Questions About Sexual Orientation on Its Admissions Forms

Though the California school system considered doing it earlier this year, the University of Iowa has in fact become the first public university to start asking incoming-freshmen about their sexual orientation. University officials say that the optional questions about sexual orientation were included on admissions applications this fall, and hope that including such questions will help the school build adequate support services for the on-campus LGBTQ community.

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Last year, Elmhurst College, a private school also located in the vast, earth-toned stretches of frostbitten earth we euphemistically call "the Midwest," became the very first U.S. college to ask incoming students about their sexual orientation. The University of Iowa, of course, offers a higher-profile example of a school making a significant effort to be more mindful of its LGBTQ students.

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University of Iowa first to ask incoming students about sexual orientation [Christian Science Monitor]

Image via Kate Connes/Shutterstock.

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DISCUSSION

jennasauers
Jenna Sauers

Interesting move and a sensible one, if people want to volunteer that information. When I was a freshman at Iowa in 2004, all of the gay students in my dorm just happened to be housed together in pairs. I always assumed the school had asked them and done that on purpose, with the intention of reducing the likelihood that those students might be harassed or feel unsafe in their homes (on the assumption that a fellow gay person wouldn't be a homophobic ass). Still, as a strategy it didn't always result in a harmonious living situation. The only pair of roommates on my floor who had to apply, and obtain, separate housing were two gay guys who just could not have been more different in temperament and did not get along.