WASHINGTON — The Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) Foundation, in collaboration with the National Black Justice Coalition ( NBJC ), on Friday will convene a delegation of students, faculty and administrators from Historically Black Colleges and Universities ( HBCUs ) for a leadership summit designed to help foster campuses that are welcoming and affirming to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer ( LGBTQ ) people.
For more than a decade, HRC Foundation, the educational arm of the nation's largest LGBT civil rights organization, has held an annual summit for LGBTQ student leaders from the nation's historically Black institutions. But this year's three-day event at HRC headquarters will, for the first time, also include HBCU faculty and administrators. Participants will be coming from schools in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, and the District of Columbia.
"We are excited to continue building on our work with HBCU student leaders, and deepening our impact on campuses by also engaging with faculty and administrators who are key to creating inclusive environments for LGBTQ people," said Leslie Hall, who heads HRC Foundation's HBCU Project. "Our collaboration this year with NBJC will help us provide these committed advocates tools and strategies they can take back to their schools to work for inclusion and social justice."
"With more than 300,000 students, HBCUs play an integral role in developing many future leaders of Black America," said Sharon Lettman-Hicks, Executive Director and CEO of NBJC, a national civil rights organization dedicated to empowering Black LGBT people. "As a proud alum of Florida A&M University, it is my honor to give back to my HBCU community by partnering with HRC to convene this group of leaders. The summit will help us build a future where diversity is both celebrated, and reflected in positive campus policies."
The National HBCU Inclusion Leadership Summit will include workshops on building inclusive campus climates and improving the quality of life for the LGBTQ people, as well as engaging in resistance to create change, and breaking the cycle of internalized oppression.