Rider receives favorable rating from Campus Pride Index
Rider University scored 3.5 stars out of five on Campus Pride Index, a national listing of LGBTQ-friendly colleges and universities.
“This score demonstrates that our community is actively committed to advocating for equity and inclusion of our LGBTQ+ students (and other members of our community),” said Cindy Threatt and Jonathon Sun, the co-chairs of Rider’s LGBTQ+ tripartite advisory committee, in a statement.
Threatt is the associate vice president of student affairs and dean of students and Sun is the assistant director of Rider’s Center for Diversity and Inclusion.
The score reflects Rider’s declared commitment to being an LGBTQ+ friendly campus, a goal outlined in both the University Strategic Plan and the Inclusive Excellence Plan. It also realizes one of the primary goals of the LGBTQ+ Advisory Committee. The committee promotes Rider University as a safe, inclusive and transformative space for people of all sexual orientations, gender identities and gender expressions.
Rider promotes a positive environment for those who identify as LGBTQ+ in many ways, including by its efforts to expand gender inclusive restrooms and establish gender inclusive housing. Rider also hosts annually an LGBTQ+ welcome dessert reception during welcome week and a Lavender Graduation Ceremony. It also has implemented the option to indicate one's preferred name in campus systems including class lists and grade reports. An LGBTQ+ student mentoring program, LGBTQ+ admissions fair and regular SafeZone training are also offered.
This year's incoming class is comprised of a number of students who identify as LGBTQ+, are first-generation and have differing abilities, among other identities. The overall diversification of the University's student body has been growing over the past several years. Forty-nine percent of this year’s incoming class are underrepresented (students of color and/or Hispanic), making it the most diverse class in Rider history.
The Campus Pride Index is organized by Campus Pride, the leading national nonprofit for student leaders and campus groups working to create a safer college environment for LGBTQ students. The Index is a tool to support campuses in assessing LGBTQ+-friendly policies, programs and practices. Schools are rated out of five possible stars. Three stars represent a mid-range score.
“We are very proud of the Rider University dedication to creating an atmosphere that affirms the identities of members of our community who identify as LGBTQ+,” says Dr. Leanna Fenneberg, vice president of student affairs. “This initial score both recognizes our accomplishments and acknowledges that this work requires a continuous commitment. We hope you’ll join us by contributing to ongoing efforts.”