Concerns about privacy have been raised regarding the trans student caucus (see previous post). If you are a trans and/or nonbinary student at Smith and feel uncomfortable attending, you can send your thoughts to email@example.com using an anonymous email client (like this one). You can also use the anonymous ask feature on tumblr. We will ask that everything said within the discussion will not be shared with those who are not present. Please let us know if you have other concerns about making this conversation accessible to the whole community.
In light of the recent events at Mount Holyoke and Mills College, a few Q&A members are planning a trans and non-binary student caucus to talk out a strategy for policy reform concerning trans men, non-binary and/or genderqueer students. Q&A members have avoided taking a stance on the admission of non-women at Smith in the past.
However, Q&A members will be meeting with the administration in early October (after they refused to meet with us prior these new policies at other colleges) and now recognize the need to have an answer to these questions. As we prepare to advocate for policy change, we want to open the conversation up to include the larger trans and non-binary communit(ies) at Smith, especially to people who have not worked with Q&A before.
** The student caucus will be CLOSED to cis people, OPEN to all trans, non-binary, and/or genderqueer Smith students, and OPEN to all trans women who attend schools in the Pioneer Valley. There will be no exceptions. To sign up for the caucus and participate in a Doodle poll to schedule it, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Please help spread the word on campus and at other schools in the Valley. **
Smith, it’s time to do the right thing.
Mills College - a women’s college in California - has always had an unwritten admissions policy we’re very fond of: anyone who identifies as a woman is welcome, regardless of gender markers on admissions documents. But now they’ve officially clarified the policy:
"Students who self-identify as female are eligible to apply for undergraduate admission. This includes students who were not assigned to the female sex at birth but live and identify as women at the time of application….Where there is a conflict between the student’s self-identified gender and the gender that appears on legal documentation such as an academic transcript or documents provided as part of the financial aid process, the student is strongly encouraged to contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions for a discussion around their desire to attend a women’s college and how they self-identify in terms of gender. This self-identification shall be the driving force behind the College’s eligibility decision." — Mills College Admissions
Let’s push Smith to adopt the same discussion-based process!
"Smith’s Unsisterly Move" - Jaclyn Friedman for The American Prospect
A controversial admissions decision at the all-women’s college shows how far some feminist institutions have yet to go in recognizing the fight for transgender rights as their own.