Navigating college life can be a big change for anyone making the transition away from home for the first time. And for trans students, the experience can be even more challenging. That’s why the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) launched the Transgender On-campus Nondiscrimination Information (TONI) project, one of the first websites for trans college and university students in the country.
“With the start of another academic year, the TONI Project isurgently needed,” says NCTE Executive Director Mara Keisling. “Colleges and universities have always been at the forefront of the progress we’ve made in trans inclusion. But there are still too many trans college students who have trouble getting to, paying for and graduating from college. That’s why NCTE and our allies came together to develop this site and hope it’ll go a long way to make the challenges of college life just a little bit easier to overcome.”
The site is chock full of information, like details about trans policies at schools – everything from housing to healthcare – and resources for organizing on-campus efforts and connecting with other trans students around the country. Users can even search or add schools to the database state by state.
“Study after study from the National Transgender Discrimination Survey to the Campus Climate Index tells us that trans and gender non-conforming college students face real problems on campus,” says Keisling. “Fifteen percent leave school because they faced severe harassment. We can’t continue to allow trans students to make choices as important as this without having all the information in front of them. And we have to hold colleges accountable for how they treat young people in our community.”