LGBTQAIP Students Abroad
Whether you identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, or queer or questioning aspects of your identity, it is always best to learn more about the social climate, laws, and norms for personal interactions in other cultures. Some societies abroad are more liberal than the U.S. on these matters and some less. It is always best to inform yourself of these key issues within the countries you are considering for your education abroad experience. Below are links to resources by organizations who have complied information on LGBTQ issues throughout the world specific to international education, travel, and campus life. There are tips and resources to help you prepare for your time abroad and your transition back into American life when you return. Preparing for what to expect in a particular country can make the difference between a wonderful experience abroad and an unpleasant one.
LGBTQ people experience different levels of acceptance throughout the world. Before you go, it is important to reflect on the culturally based ideas and definitions of sexual identity and consider carefully how your identity as a LGBTQ person may affect your relationships with host nationals, your cultural adjustment and your overall education abroad experience. Part of your pre-departure preparations should include reflecting on the larger context of acting on your LGBTQ identity while abroad. What role as a visitor do you/ should you have in the host culture? Does your right to be LGBTQ in the U.S. conflict with your host country’s religious or cultural values and traditions? How will you reconcile your human rights with the cultural values of your host society? Are there safety considerations which you should be aware of?
The Office of International Education and Global Initiatives at Binghamton University is a SAFE and INCLUSIVE space for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning students and their allies. Never hesitate to contact an advisor in the office for more information or to share your input or concerns. You can also visit the LGBTQ Center on the ground floor of Bartle Library in LSG 549, easily accessed via the doors along West Drive A.K.A. "the brain."
LGBTQAIP Resources in International Education
Through Diversity Abroad, an international education consortium dedicated to increasing participation and better serving the needs of diverse and underrepresented students in international education, you will find a list of questions/topics you may wish to consider along with a link to a LGBTQ student guide written by at student at USF. The guide is linked here as well.
GoAbroad.com has also created a thorough LGBT student guide offering step-by-step suggestions for education abroad from pre-departure and beyond. The guide also includes LGBTQ-specific education abroad scholarship information and summaries of LGBTQ "friendly", "neutral", and "negative" education abroad locations.
ILGA's website is particularly helpful when researching laws around the world affecting the LGBTQ community. ILGA’s aim is to work for the equality of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex people and their liberation from all forms of discrimination. The organization seeks to achieve this aim through the world-wide cooperation and mutual support of its members.
As the title suggests, the following is an article written by a student describing lessons learned while studying abroad.
9 Major Life Lessons I Learned Studying Abroad as an LGBT by Robin Goralka, 08/08/2013
CIS Abroad also has a collection of student experiences on Education Abroad programs. You read more about the countries profiled below.
For additional resources including a region specific annotated bibliography check out this LGBTQ Students studying Abroad webpage by Carleton College.