Members of Elmhurst College’s LGBT community share their stories of self-discovery and hope.
Elmhurst was the first college in the nation to include a question about sexual orientation on its application for admission.
Bill Johnson '68 made history as the first openly gay man to gain ordination to the mainstream Christian ministry.
Elmhurst College is home to a highly diverse student body. On our inclusive campus, students of every orientation find safety, acceptance and the resources and support they need to thrive.
Open and Welcoming
Elmhurst is affiliated with the United Church of Christ, the first mainstream American church to ordain an African-American pastor, a woman and an openly gay person (the Reverend Dr. William R. Johnson ’68). In the spirit of the UCC’s commitment to social justice and inclusivity, the College is open and welcoming to people of all faiths—and of all sexual orientations.
Elmhurst was the first college in the nation to include a question about sexual orientation on its application for admission. The question, which is optional, allows us to connect LGBTQ students with campus resources even before they’ve arrived at Elmhurst. What’s more, we offer enrichment scholarships specifically for LGBTQ students and members of other underrepresented groups.
A Wealth of Resources
LGBTQ students at Elmhurst find support through a variety of campus organizations, including QSA (Queer Student Alliance), a student-run advocacy group, and SAFE (Staff, Administrators and Faculty for Equality), which offers a confidential support network for the LGBTQ community. The campus houses 10 all-gender restrooms that are safe and accessible to people at any point on the gender spectrum.
Elmhurst celebrates the LGBTQ community throughout the school year with a variety of events that spark conversation and raise awareness. Student-run activities include the Big Queer Gathering and National Coming Out Day, while the William R. Johnson Guestship provides an annual forum on the issues and life stories of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
For students interested in the academic study of LGBTQ issues, Elmhurst College offers a concentration in LGBTQ Studies through the Intercultural Studies Program. In this course of study, students engage in critical analysis of contemporary issues within the intersections of gender and sexuality.
For more information about the LGBTQ community at Elmhurst, please contact us.