Grant recognizes Penn State's support for LGBTA resource professionals

University Park, Pa. -- Projects pioneered by Penn State’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Ally (LGBTA) Student Resource Center were recently awarded a new grant of $12,000 from the New York-based Calamus Foundation. The funds will further the center’s partnership with the Consortium of Higher Education LGBT Resource Professionals and expand the services it offers to student affairs staff members at institutions across the country.

“We are deeply grateful to the Calamus Foundation for recognizing the value of our efforts to connect and communicate with professionals who have the responsibility of improving campus climates for LGBTA students,” said Allison Subasic, director of the center. “We are now poised to build upon the work that we have already been able to complete thanks to earlier support from the foundation, and the new grant will accelerate our progress toward providing a full range of tools for individuals and programs.”

Since 2007, Penn State’s LGBTA Student Resource Center has partnered with the Consortium of Higher Education LGBT Resource Professionals to create the LBGTQArchitect, an online, open-source environment where members and the public can find sample documents, presentations and other media that can assist in the development of institution-specific activities and materials, such as student needs surveys, discussion guides for support groups, and domestic partner benefits fact sheets. The website (architect.lgbtcampus.org) was originally developed with a grant from the Calamus Foundation, and the new award will help to fund new functionality as well as maintenance and updates.

The grant also will create a summer intern position for a graduate student pursuing a degree in student affairs. Penn State’s LGBTA Student Resource Center will host the intern, who will be charged with a range of activities on behalf of the consortium. Projects may include assessing best practices in the development of LGBT centers and programming nationwide and identifying campuses that may need additional support in the creation of services for underrepresented groups of students.

“This graduate intern will be an important part of the Penn State LGBT community as well as an invaluable asset to the consortium,” said Subasic. “The position also will offer a tremendous learning experience to emerging higher education professionals and help them to consider, as they begin their careers in the field, how they can best support lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, ally, queer, questioning, and intersex students."

The Calamus Foundation’s grant is an affirmation of Penn State’s leadership, at the national level, in reaching out to young people of every identity and orientation, said Lou Martarano, a Penn State alumnus and a member of the LGBTA Student Resource Center advisory board.

“I am proud of my alma mater in countless ways, and now for its role in setting a new standard for the services and support offered to students,” Martarano said. “Thanks to the Calamus Foundation’s generosity, we will now be able to raise that standard even higher.”

Last Updated December 06, 2010