L G B T   C a m p u s   O r g a n i z i n g
issues.  If there are other offices on your
floor is all about.  Inevitably, there is
campus that you feel are important to the
always someone who wants to move in.
success of a lgbt residence floor, include
It is also a good way for people to ease
them as well.  You can never have too
their fears about the floor.  One thing that
many allies.  Brainstorming a list of all
you will doubtless encounter as you cre 
the possible groups and offices on your
ate your own floor are people who think
campus that are important to your floor
that everyone is sleeping together and
may be helpful.
that you are receiving special treatment.
Open houses have given people the
opportunity to see for themselves that this
is not at all the case.  As the guests get to
After you have a floor up and running,
know the residents of the 2 in 20 floor,
there are other issues that you need to
fears vanish and lasting friendships are
address.  One of the most important is
made.  So, not only is an open house a
how will you recruit new students for the
good opportunity to recruit perspective
program?  Additionally, you should think
students, it also provides a way to educate
about how you will retain them.  One
the campus community.
good way to recruit is to advertise the
floor during new student orientation pro 
As discussed earlier, it is important to
grams.  This is where your building rela 
have a group of lgbt students and their
tionships with other offices will pay off.
allies who actually want to live on the
It is important that new students realize
floor.  Also as mentioned previously, you
what their living options are.  
can expect to meet resistance to the idea
of a lgbt residence floor at every level of
Other good ways to recruit are to have
its development.  Luckily, at UMass, the
lgbt socials in the building.  One ways
Director of Residence Life, the Dean of
that the 2 in 20 SIRP at the University of
Students, and the Housing Assignment
Massachusetts has successfully recruited
Office all were supportive of the idea.
students is through hosting open houses.
Additionally, most of the Residence
The floor conducts an open house for
Director Staff members were also behind
anyone who is interested in seeing what
the idea.  What hindered the process most
the 2 in 20 SIRP is like.  Traditionally,
was that there was initially a limited
each student on the floor writes an auto 
show of interest by lgbt students and
biography about themselves and their
allies.  However, once the Residence Life
experiences on the floor.  These are com 
Department began to actively advertise
piled into a packet that is handed out to
the program and students began to hear
each guest.  There is a reception for the
about the program, the program took off
guests during which the Residence Direc 
and has been growing ever since.
tor tells the story and the history of the
Presently the existing 2 in 20 floor is
floor and the residents answer questions.
filled to capacity and the program is look 
The reception is followed by a tour of the
ing to expand to another floor.  Eventual 
ly the goal is to have a Gay, Lesbian,
Bisexual, Transgender and Ally Resi 
These open houses have been quite suc 
dence Hall.  
cessful at UMass.  Each year more and
more people show up to find out what the
2 9 2
P r a c t i c a l   A p p l i c a t i o n s


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