Margaret Eby
February 10, 2015 11:43 am

Schools all over the country are adapting new policies to better serve gender non-conforming students. Just look at the University of Vermont’s new policy of letting people choose their own gender definition. And now, Bryn Mawr, a college that has traditionally only been open to women, has revised its admissions policy to allow transgender women as well as other gender non-conforming people. Let’s give Bryn Mawr a HUGE round of applause.

Bryn Mawr alums and students had been lobbying the school to clarify their admissions policies, which advocates argued were unclear with regards to whether trans individuals were welcome. Via a Change.org petition, which gathered over 2,000 signatures, the alums and students wrote: “As alums and current students of Bryn Mawr College, we are disappointed that Bryn Mawr has not already adopted a written policy explicitly encouraging and welcoming trans women and people outside the gender binary to apply, especially given that there are already trans and nonbinary students on campus. Avoiding a well-defined policy does not allow for greater inclusivity in admissions; on the contrary, it creates unnecessary and discouraging roadblocks for trans, nonbinary, and gender nonconforming students applying to Bryn Mawr.”

Well, their pleas were heard by the administration. Yesterday, Bryn Mawr president Kim Cassidy announced that the Board of Trustees had voted to make a more clear and articulate policy welcoming trans individuals.

“In addition to those applicants who were assigned female at birth, the applicant pool will be inclusive of transwomen and of intersex individuals who live and identify as women at the time of application. Intersex individuals who do not identify as male are also eligible for admission. Those assigned female at birth who have taken medical or legal steps to identify as male are not eligible for admission,” Cassidy wrote in a statement.

That’s a GREAT step for the trans community. Hopefully other traditional women’s colleges will continue to follow suit. As for now, right on Bryn Mawr!

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