HRC, Black LGTBQ+ Students, HBCU Summit

HRC Celebrates 20 Years Of Supporting Black LGTBQ+ Students At HBCU Summit

Since its inception, more than 700 students have attended the LGTBQ+ HBCU summit.

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation and the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) celebrated the 20th anniversary of their HBCU summit in Washington, D.C. This year’s event hosted 32 students who sought to develop their leadership skills and to uplift the LGBTQ+ community on Black college campuses. 

Since its inception, more than 700 students have attended the LGTBQ+ HBCU summit.

The Leadership Summit offers a training program that “empowers LGBTQ+ HBCU students to act as change-agents on their campuses.” The program is designed to teach students how to navigate the intersectionalities of “race, religion, gender identity, class, and sexual orientation.“ 

One key component of this year’s summit was identity development, which helped to support students who are struggling with self expression. 

“So many of our students come from places where they can’t be themselves…they really have never been in a space that supports and includes them,” HBCU Director Leslie Hall said.

For the past five years, ballroom culture has been included in the curriculum.  According to Hall, this highlights the students ability to work with diverse groups of people. This year, the students attended the Garcon’s 15th Anniversary House Ball where they were fully immersed in ballroom culture. 

“The sheer joy and wonder that lit up their faces as they witnessed the beauty and talent within the ballroom community was truly special. For many students, their exposure to ballroom culture may have been limited to shows like Pose and Legendary, but the ballroom scene is so much more than what is portrayed on screen. It serves as a powerful extension of their LGBTQ identity, representing a vibrant and diverse community that embraces and celebrates all its members,” Hall told The Georgia Voice. 

In response to the HRC’s recent state of emergency for LGBTQ+ Americans, the organization prioritized including students from states that have recently passed anti-LGBTQ  and anti-DEI laws. Additionally it added a component to the summit requiring students to complete a capstone project where they must create a campus event or policy that promotes LGBTQ+ inclusion. 

For more  information about the HRC-HBCU Summit, visit

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