The Best College for LGBTQ+ Students In Each State

There are colleges in every state that provide notable LGBTQ+ support services. Find out which schools made our list for best colleges for LGBTQ+ students in each state.

portrait of Debbi Johnson-Rais, Ed.D.
by Debbi Johnson-Rais, Ed.D.

Updated June 25, 2022

Reviewed by Angelique Geehan

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According to the American Council of Education, identity development, campus climate, and policy remain the most critical components of support for LGBTQ+ students. Many colleges struggle to provide data-driven programs to support these students. However, some schools have made advances to provide targeted support for trans and nonbinary students, LGBTQ+ students, and LGBTQ+ students of color.

In partnership with Campus Pride, BestColleges has put together a list of LGBTQ+-friendly colleges, highlighting the best colleges for LGBTQ+ students in several states.

Who Is Campus Pride?

Campus Pride serves LGBTQ+ and allied student leaders and campus organizations in leadership development, support programs, and services to create safer, more inclusive, and LGBTQ+-friendly colleges and universities. It exists to develop, support, and give "voice and action" in building future LGBTQ+ and ally student leaders.

Campus Pride Resources for LGBTQ+ College Students

How Do We Rank LGBTQ+-Friendly Colleges in Each State?

In partnership with Campus Pride, BestColleges presents this list of the most LGBTQ+ friendly colleges in each state. In addition to the Campus Pride Index rating scale, BestColleges has included its own ranking methodology that emphasizes college affordability and important academic quality metrics, including admissions rate, enrollment rate, graduation rate, and accreditation. You can also find this unique ranking methodology on our list of the best LGBTQ+-friendly colleges.

It is important to note that the following list does not include states where there are no schools that rank on the Campus Pride Index or states that do not have at least a four-star rating on the Campus Pride Index.

The Best Colleges for LGBTQ+ Students in Each State in 2022

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In Partner with BestColleges.com

  • American University
    Location

    Washington, DC

    American University in Washington, D.C. provides LGBTQ+ students, faculty, and staff with significant supportive resources through its Center for Diversity and Inclusion. Resources include the Trans Resource guide, LGBTQ housing options, and a weekly newsletter with updates on community events. See the LGBTQ community page for more resources.

    The Health Center provides counseling as well as wellness promotion and gender-affirming support. The office connects individuals to external non-profit advocacy in the greater D.C. area. American University ranks 4.5 on the Campus Pride Index.

    Academic Snapshot

    • Admission Rate: 36%
    • Graduation Rate: 79%
    • Undergraduate Enrollment: 13,000
    • Annual Undergraduate Tuition, In-State: $49,070
    • School Status: Private
    • School Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • Bowdoin College
    Location

    Brunswick, ME

    After integrating with the Women's Resource Center (WRC) in 2017, the Resource Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity (RCSGD) became the Sexuality, Women, and Gender Center in order to better support both women and the LGBTQ+ community at Bowdoin College.

    Resources include workshops on inclusive language, gender in art, and trans rights. Various student organizations provide opportunities for participation in social justice and other activities. Bowdoin College ranks 4 on the Campus Pride Index.

    Academic Snapshot

    • Admission Rate: 9%
    • Graduation Rate: 95%
    • Undergraduate Enrollment: 1,750
    • Annual Undergraduate Tuition, In-State: $55,822
    • School Status: Private
    • School Accreditation: New England Commission on Higher Education
  • Brown University
    Location

    Providence, RI

    The LGBTQ Center at Brown University was established in 2004 and serves to provide a comprehensive training and support system surrounding issues of gender identity and sexuality for members of the LGBTQ+ community at the university and in the greater community.

    Resources and activities include gender-inclusive housing, health resources, gender-inclusive restrooms, policy on sexual harassment and gender discrimination, and various social and support groups. Brown University ranks 4.5 on the Campus Pride Index.

    Academic Snapshot

    • Admission Rate: 7%
    • Graduation Rate: 96%
    • Undergraduate Enrollment: 9,728
    • Annual Undergraduate Tuition, In-State: $57,112
    • School Status: Private
    • School Accreditation: New England Commission on Higher Education
  • Connecticut College
    Location

    New London, CT

    Connecticut College's LGBTQIA Center was founded in 2007 by a group of students in conjunction with a faculty member. The Center provides a location for study and programming and a resource library for the community.

    Activities include participation in national events — such as National Coming Out Day and World AIDS Day — and internal events such as pride rallies, Transgender Day of Remembrance, and mentorship programs. Connecticut College ranks 4.5 on the Campus Pride Index.

    Academic Snapshot

    • Admission Rate: 37%
    • Graduation Rate: 84%
    • Undergraduate Enrollment: 1,800
    • Annual Undergraduate Tuition, In-State: $56,540
    • School Status: Private
    • School Accreditation: New England Commission on Higher Education
  • Dartmouth College
    Location

    Hanover, NH

    The Dartmouth College Office of Pluralism and Leadership (OPAL) provides community-specific campus resources to various student populations, including the LGBTQ+ community. Support includes LGBTQIA+ advising, housing, and academic residency programs through Triangle House, a library with specialized resources, and a Partnerships in Pride mentoring program.

    The Counseling and Human Development office offers a safe and welcoming space for individuals to seek help with issues of gender identity and sexuality confidentially. Dartmouth College ranks 4.5 on the Campus Pride Index.

    Academic Snapshot

    • Admission Rate: 8%
    • Graduation Rate: 95%
    • Undergraduate Enrollment: 6,342
    • Annual Undergraduate Tuition, In-State: $55,605
    • School Status: Private
    • School Accreditation: New England Commission on Higher Education
  • Emory University
    Location

    Atlanta, GA

    The Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Life's main objective is to create a campus climate of acceptance and affirmation for the LGBTQ+ community. The center offers social activities such as Wednesday Wine Downs, LBGTeas, open houses, panel discussions, interactive workshops, and Safe Space training.

    Additional support includes access to specialized legal services, health initiatives, and professional and academic development with an LGBT+ focus. Emory University ranks 4.5 on the Campus Pride Index.

    Academic Snapshot

    • Admission Rate: 16%
    • Graduation Rate: 90%
    • Undergraduate Enrollment: 14,769
    • Annual Undergraduate Tuition, In-State: $53,070
    • School Status: Private
    • School Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission
  • Guilford College
    Location

    Greensboro, NC

    Guilford College's Diversity and Inclusion office provides a number of support services for members of the LGBTQ+ community. Multiple residence halls provide gender-inclusive housing and student activities coordinated by Guilford College Pride.

    The counseling center provides confidential assistance. Health insurance is provided to cover gender confirmation surgery and hormone therapy. The office also provides connections to community activism and support programs. Guilford College ranks 5 on the Campus Pride Index.

    Academic Snapshot

    • Admission Rate: 75%
    • Graduation Rate: 56%
    • Undergraduate Enrollment: 1,200
    • Annual Undergraduate Tuition, In-State: $37,920
    • School Status: Private
    • School Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission
  • Ithaca College
    Location

    Ithaca, NY

    Ithaca College provides a vibrant and engaged community for LGBTQ+ students through their Center for LGBT Education, Outreach & Services. The center, founded in 1999, supports both the academic and social needs of the community and its allies.

    Campus-wide events include an Ithaca Pride walking tour of historically meaningful sites in Ithaca, an important site for LGBTQ+ rights. It also hosts speakers, film series, receptions, and other social gatherings. Ithaca College ranks 5 on the Campus Pride Index.

    Academic Snapshot

    • Admission Rate: 73%
    • Graduation Rate: 74%
    • Undergraduate Enrollment: 6,000
    • Annual Undergraduate Tuition, In-State: $45,274
    • School Status: Private
    • School Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • Kansas State University
    Location

    Manhattan, KS

    The LGBT Resource Center at Kansas State University opened in 2010, and works to create an inclusive environment for LGBTQ+ individuals, as well as resources to support the community at large.

    Organizations involved in this effort include the K-State Sexuality and Gender Alliance, the LGBTQ+ Faculty Staff Alliance, the Gender Collective, and oSTEM. These organizations support various initiatives such as appropriate housing communities, restroom facilities, and gender and sexuality resources. K-State ranks 5 on the Campus Pride Index.

    Academic Snapshot

    • Admission Rate: 95%
    • Graduation Rate: 65%
    • Undergraduate Enrollment: 20,000
    • Annual Undergraduate Tuition, In-State: $9,735
    • School Status: Public
    • School Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
  • Kenyon College
    Location

    Gambier, OH

    Kenyon College has a strong institutional commitment to providing a safe, vibrant community for its LGBTQ+ students, faculty and staff, and policy to support them. Their programming involves social, academic, and advocacy opportunities, as well as health promotion and financial support.

    Kenyon College biennially hosts the Queer and Trans Studies Conference, featuring tracks in healthcare and technology, visual and performing arts, humanities and popular culture, society and law, and community interest workshops. Kenyon College ranks 5 on the Campus Pride Index.

    Academic Snapshot

    • Admission Rate: 34%
    • Graduation Rate: 91%
    • Undergraduate Enrollment: 1,734
    • Annual Undergraduate Tuition, In-State: $56,340
    • School Status: Private
    • School Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

State Resources for LGBTQ+ College Students

Lambda Legal is a nonprofit organization that provides legal advocacy for members of the LGBTQ+ community. This comprehensive list includes a wide range of online and in-person resources offered by the organization. This database from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists more than 30 reports, pamphlets, and other publications aimed at LGBTQ+ youth, parents, teachers, school administrators, and allies. This extensive collection of financial aid opportunities includes LGBTQ+ scholarships and grants of varying amounts. Many of these awards are reserved for certain academic majors or LGBTQ+ subgroups.

Explore LGBTQ+ Resources

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Meet Our Campus Pride Experts

Portrait of Genny Beemyn, Ph.D.

Genny Beemyn, Ph.D.

Genny Beemyn is a leading expert on the experiences of trans people in the United States, particularly the lives of trans students, and on the development of trans-inclusive college policies and practices. They are the director of the Stonewall Center at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and the Trans Policy Clearinghouse coordinator for Campus Pride.


Portrait of Shane L. Windmeyer, M.S., Ed.

Shane L. Windmeyer, M.S., Ed.

Shane Windmeyer is a leading author on LGBTQ+ campus issues, national leader in LGBTQ+ civil rights, and a champion for LGBTQ+ issues on college campuses. He is co-founder and executive director of Campus Pride. Windmeyer is also the author of The Advocate College Guide for LGBTQ+ Students, the first-ever college guide profiling the "100 Best LGBTQ-Friendly Campuses."