Remember to stop by the Browsing Room in Neilson Library tomorrow at 4:30 for a panel featuring Five College trans women discussing the inclusion of trans women at Smith. *no photography please*
Smith Q&A invites you to read the following phone script to any/all of the following Smith College officials. Every call counts!
Deb Shaver, Dean of Admission - (413) 585-2500
Audrey Smith, VP of Enrollment - (800) 383-3232
Rebecca Lindsey, Secretary of the Board of Trustees – (413) 585-2105
Hello! My name is (your name), from (name of your organization)*, and I’m calling regarding your admissions policy for trans women applicants. While your provisional policy requests matching gender markers and pronouns in recommendation letters and transcripts, it does not account for the economic and social conditions many young trans women live under. Many school districts do not allow trans students to update the gender markers on their school records, and only a handful of states have issued guidelines for these situations. Less than half of trans high schoolers are able to change their school records to comply with your policy. Because schools are such dangerous places for trans girls, many are not comfortable being “out” at school or asking to change their records at all, and this is especially true for low-income trans girls and trans girls of color. Even those who are out in their schools and communities are not guaranteed supportive teachers who will consent to write recommendation letters with proper names and pronouns. For all these reasons, and more, it’s important that Smith’s policy regarding transgender women applicants moves towards one of self-identification, like the new policies at Mount Holyoke and Mills College. Womanhood does not reside in school records! Once again, my name is (your name), and I thank you for your time and your consideration.
*The inclusion of your organization’s title denotes to Smith officials that this issue is one that concerns people from all over the state of Massachusetts and beyond! (If you do not affiliate with any company or non-profit, please disregard.)
Demand policy change by email:
Dean of Admission (email@example.com)
VP of Enrollment (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Secretary of the Board of Trustees (email@example.com)
If you need help with this, contact us.
“In my early twenties, I was dating a trans woman
who in some ways still had a male bodywhose body I projected maleness and masculinity onto because of my own prejudice. I was very attracted to her, and she was absolutely a woman, but part of me was like if I’m attracted to this anatomically male body, does that mean that I could be interested in men?using her in a really creepy way as an avatar of maleness and masculinity, completely contradicting what I just said. I don’t want this to be interpreted as I dated a trans woman so I could be into men, but I feel that there’s a blurriness that happens with trans peoplethat’s exactly what I’m saying and it’s fucked up. For some people that blurtheir prejudice opens things upbutts up against reality and calls thingsthe tip of the iceberg regarding their own gender issues into question, things that could otherwise be rigid identitiesthey should talk to a therapist about instead of using trans people as an objectified representation of their own internalized binarist gender issues.”
Much clearer now!