On Campus

Athlete Ally has more than 30 Campus Chapters nationwide

Starting a Campus Chapter

Athlete Ally Campus Chapters are groups of student-athletes who are passionate about creating and sustaining LGBTQ inclusive athletic communities. Members of campus chapters are ready to take the next step to lead the charge at their school. Interested in starting a chapter? Send us a message here. 

Inviting Athlete Ally to your campus

Athlete Ally visits colleges, high schools and corporate campuses to educate and empower athletes, coaches, staff, and fans. If you would like Athlete Ally to visit your campus or school to deliver a presentation, workshop or other programs on LGBTQ inclusion in sports, send us a message using the form for more information.

What are Campus Chapters?

Campus chapters decide on and enact programming specific to their campus based on Athlete Ally’s mission. This includes hosting Pride nights, presenting educational workshops on LGBTQ-topics, working to adopt inclusive policies at the school and/or conference level, and advocating for anti-discriminatory policies at a city, state, regional and national level. We work with chapters daily to assess their campus culture to determine appropriate programming.

Why Start A Chapter?

Because you want to create change on your campus and build community while you do it! You’ll get connected to a network of activists across the country who organize events on their campuses and in their communities to create LGBTQ inclusive athletic environments. You’ll also get connected to Athlete Ally staff and Ambassadors.

Interested in starting a Campus Chapter?

There are three easy steps to get started.

1.) Read the Guide

Our Campus Chapter Resource Guide includes a collection of resources to help you learn more about the program, determine if a campus chapter is a good fit for your school and how to start organizing your campus chapter.

2.) Gain interest from your community

If you’re interested in starting up an Athlete Ally chapter, we recommend having at least one staff member and 2-3 student athletes who are interested in being members. This will help ensure that your chapter is a lasting community effort.

3.) Formal Onboarding with Athlete Ally

Once you have determined that a campus chapter is a good fit for your campus reach out to [email protected] or click the button below to schedule an onboarding call, and find out more about how Athlete Ally can support your process!

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Education

Our chapters host workshops and lead discussion about LGBTQ topics in their athletic communities.

Policy

Our chapters work within their institution to write and implement LGBTQ inclusive policies for their athletic department and broader college/University. Athlete Ally is happy to help collaborate and provide resources on best practice policies and practices.

Advocacy

Our chapters use their platform to speak out on social justice issues by writing op-eds, taking to social media and sharing their stories.

 

What does it mean to be an ally?

Our model of ending homophobia and transphobia in sports is rooted in allyship. The strongest movements for equity are supported by allies. Being an ally is not an identity—it is a process of building relationships with those LGBTQ athletes who are most affected based on trust, consistency, and accountability. Allies are here to support and make use of their privilege as athletes, coaches, or athletic staff to turn the spotlight towards the voices of those who are continuously marginalized, silenced, and ignored.

What could Athlete Ally speak about on my campus?

That depends on your campus culture. If the conversation surrounding LGBTQ inclusivity and affirmation has never been discussed within your athletic communities, a keynote speech to all athletes would be a great place to start. If there are key leaders on campus that want to have a discussion, we can facilitate roundtable, workshops, and small meetings. We also meet with decision makers on campus to help implement long-lasting policies and practices. If you would like to know more about how we can work with your campus, leave us a message.

I’m a student athlete. How can I talk to teammates who may be uncomfortable with a openly gay player?

Some athletes don't realize that LGBTQ people are very active in sports. It's estimated that 40% of LGBTQ youth have played at least one team sport. Chances are that you and your teammates have played alongside LGBTQ athletes before, though they may not have realized it. The only thing that changes when a player is open about their sexuality is they feel more comfortable being themselves with the community.

You can tell your teammates that LGBTQ athletes are there to play the game, just like everyone else, and they deserve the same opportunities and respect.

I’m a coach. How can I reconcile my faith, or that of my teammates, with being an ally?

Faith is personal, which means that every individual has a unique experience incorporating allyship into his or her religious beliefs. Countless Athlete Allies are also people of faith. We recommend that you look closely at the values of allyship and see how they fit in the larger context of your religion.

For example, being an ally means treating others with respect, dignity, and kindness. It means embracing difference and respecting people rather than judging them. We also suggest that you study why some members of your faith may negatively view LGBTQ people and ask yourself if those views make sense to you. Seek out LGBTQ- affirming organizations within your religion. We promise, they exist, and we are happy to help you and them. Learn about their views, ask constructive questions and share the answers with members of your religious community. Thoughtful questions are often the rst point of productive conversation about being an ally of faith.

How can I help make my campus athletics more inclusive to LGBTQ people?

There are countless ways that campus athletics could be more inclusive to LGBTQ people involving values, policies, and practices. To start, athletic departments should have a written nondiscrimination policy that explicitly covers “sexual orientation,” “gender identity,” and “gender expression” for their teams, staff, coaches, and fans. Team specific codes of conducts are great spaces to reiterate commitment to LGBTQ inclusion. Training for all staff and coaches, inclusive dress codes, and asking of pronouns are other ways to make campus athletics more inclusive. Need help specifically for your campus? Feel free to send us a message.

I’m a high school athlete and I’m thinking of coming out to my team, can you help?

Athlete Ally works closely with LGBTQ athletes across the world. We also collaborate with affiliate organizations that specialize in providing support to LGBTQ athletes who are considering coming out. Don't hesitate to reach out to us for support, guidance or resources. We also recommend connecting with the LGBTQ center on your campus.