Temple took a major step toward LGBT inclusion on Main Campus recently when the university announced the creation of the MarcDavid LGBTQ Scholarship.
As Cindy Stansbury reports on Page 1, the $5,000 scholarship will be awarded to one student and was made possible by an anonymous donor. It will be given based on a student’s leadership and advocacy in the LGBT community either on or off of Main Campus, with some consideration given to financial need.
The MarcDavid Scholarship seeks out students for their individual activism in the LGBT community, which is something The Temple News applauds. By focusing on students’ activity in the LGBT community, the university shows its commitment to inclusion for all on Main Campus as it moves toward a more welcoming climate.
In May, the university released the results of a survey measuring the LGBT climate on Main Campus and, in September, launched a website that serves as a clearinghouse for information related to LGBT matters on Main Campus. While this scholarship is not connected to the task force and is the result of a gift given by an anonymous donor, it demonstrates the progress the university has made toward more adequate inclusion on Main Campus.
The Temple News agrees with LGBT advocate Scott Gratson’s assessment of the scholarship: “I see this scholarship to be a very kind and thoughtful statement from an even more [benevolent] donor.”
The Temple News encourages the university to take further action above the website to promote a welcoming campus environment for the LGBT community. After plans for the website were announced in May, administrators labeled it as a first step toward dealing with LGBT issues on Main Campus.
The administration should start to roll out further responses to this survey and ensure its first step is not the only one.