Gender and Sexual Diversity Initiatives


The Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is committed to the full participation of ISU community members who hold diverse gender and sexual identities in support of ISU’s efforts to develop and sustain a more comprehensively inclusive environment aligned with the university’s strategic plan. 

Gender and Sexual Diversity Initiatives (GSDI) within the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion exists to address matters that are important to the LGBTQ+ community and is the touchpoint for community members who would like to engage in work around topics of gender and sexual diversity.

GSDI impacts policy development, organizational structure and campus climate by leveraging the expectations of the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion as an enterprise-focused entity at Iowa State.  While not explicitly student-serving, staff in GSDI advise student organizations and work with student-serving offices to promote their goals within the organization of ISU.  GSDI also advocates for the involvement of ISU offices, departments and colleges in external opportunities to show ISU's commitment to GSD topics and the LGBTQ+ community.


Current Initiatives

GSDI is involved in a number of ongoing projects on campus, in the Ames area, and throughout Iowa.  They include:

  • Administering the Big 12 Violence and Discrimination Awareness and Prevention fund (VDAPF at ISU)
  • Coordinating GSD @ ISU, an online course for gender and sexual diversity education - launching 2022
  • Expanding gender-inclusive housing in the Department of Residence
  • Improving healthcare in Ames for people who are transgender through a partnership with McFarland Clinic and Mary Greeley Medical Center
  • Pronoun Project and common language in gender and sexual diversity topics
  • Consulting on more robust campus information systems and processes
  • Advancing relationships within the ISU LGBTQ+ community
  • Connecting with future Cyclones annually at the Iowa Safe Schools Conference on LGBTQ Youth
  • Working with ISU Extension and Outreach / 4-H Youth Development Champions Groups and coaching the LGBTQ+ Champions Group
  • Collaborating with Ames Pride non-profit organization
  • Consulting with and presenting at events sponsored by statewide LGBTQ+ agencies

Future Projects

  • Inclusive restrooms / facilities on campus and education on their importance with project managers
  • Development of University Committee for Gender and Sexual Diversity Initiatives
  • Creation of Pride Summit - Ames
  • Publication of LGBTQ+ history at ISU and in Ames