The Office of Intercultural Student Engagement provides LGBTQ services to foster a campus environment that is positive, safe, and supportive for members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning community. Services include:
- Supporting students who may have questions about sexual orientation and gender identity.
- Advocating for students experiencing discrimination or harassment based on real or perceived assumptions about sexual orientation.
- Increasing community awareness and coordinating programs on a variety of topics relevant to LGBTQ issues.
- Facilitating Safe Space Training (identifying safe people and safe spaces on campus for LGBTQ persons) and other workshops on combating homophobia and transphobia and developing LGBTQ allies on campus.
- Providing an LGBTQ lending library in the Cultural Exchange Lounge (Campus Center 100) on the Biddeford Campus with DVDs and books available for check-out.
- Sponsoring educational, academic, and social events during National Coming Out Week in October, the UNE Gaypril Pride program in April, Pride Portland in June (parade/festival), and programming in the UNE Diversity Lecture Series.
Safe Space Training
UNE Safe Space is a training program that helps you understand the challenges that many lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer persons experience.
ISE works across the institution to assess the climate for underrepresented students, including those who are transgender, gender-variant, or non-binary. Below, you will find more information on current policies and opportunities for UNE students.
Chosen Name and Gender
Request to Change Gender on File
You may change your gender marker on file from "Male" to "Female" or vice-versa by submitting a Request to Change Gender form in Banner to the University Registrar.
The Chosen Name project
Do you go by a name that is different than your legal name? If so, we want to get your name right. The Chosen Name project is an initiative that allows students, faculty, and professional staff to have their Chosen Name reflected on various campus platforms.
This initiative benefits individuals who have changed their marital status or gender expression, use a different name in English than their native language or country of origin name or use their middle name. Whatever the reason may be, we support your decision to go by your Chosen Name.
If you are interested in having your Chosen Name used while at UNE contact the Office of Title IX and Civil Rights Compliance.
The University is committed to providing safe and accessible campus restroom facilities. We recommend that individuals make choices about restroom usage based on their own level of comfort and their gender identity or expression. We know that many transgender individuals feel safer and more comfortable using single stall restrooms. Currently, there are single stall restrooms in many campus buildings. All of these restrooms are gender-inclusive — meaning that anyone, of any gender identity — can use that restroom. If you find that one of the restrooms on our map/list or that any single-occupancy restroom on campus is labeled incorrectly, please email us.
Gender-Inclusive housing is an option in University residence halls. In this housing style, any gender can share a residence hall room, and each roommate must agree to live in this arrangement. This option is best for if you identify as transgender, are changing or exploring your gender expression, or you feel most comfortable living with people of a different gender than your own. This is not recommended for romantic relationships.
If you are interested, contact the Office of Housing and Residential/Commuter Life at (207) 602-2272 for more information.
Someone whose gender identity (their inner sense of who they are) differs from the one assigned or presumed at birth.
Someone whose gender identity is the same as the one assigned or presumed at birth.
Someone who does not express their gender in ways that meet society’s expectations of gender roles.
The external display of gender, through a combination of dress, demeanor, social behavior, and other factors, generally measured on a scale of masculinity and femininity.
The internal perception of one’s gender, and how they label themselves, based on how much they align or don’t align with what they understand their options for gender to be. Common identity labels include man, woman, genderqueer, trans, and more.
Transgender and gender-variant people face severe access problems when it comes to accessing traditionally-gendered facilities. Everyone deserves equal access to the services we offer, and this brings UNE into compliance with state and federal guidelines.
Being able to safely use a restroom is not a privilege — it is a right, and one guaranteed by Maine law. All-gender restrooms are for everyone, including people who aren’t transgender. This can include parents or family members of young children and persons who need a personal care attendant. There are members of the transgender community who express their gender in ways that do not appear stereotypically male or female and may be most comfortable and safe in single-occupancy restrooms.
There is no reason to be concerned. Every all-gender restroom at UNE is a single-occupancy space, meaning it will typically only be used by one person at a time.
There are a few restrooms on each campus designated as such, but not all spaces are labeled as such and some are marked as only for men or women, despite being identical. Standardizing signage and language across campuses makes it easy to identify accessible spaces. A map and list of spaces will also be made available on the UNE website.
There are no rules or laws about appearance as it relates to restroom use and access. Restricting access based on visible gender markers relies entirely on stereotyping and is considered to be sex discrimination. Recent guidelines from the Department of Education regarding Title IX of the Higher Education Amendment of 1972 make clear that students at all colleges and universities must be allowed to use the facilities consistent with their gender identity.
The details about someone’s choice to undergo surgery do not tell you anything about their gender identity or affect their right to use a certain bathroom. Asking questions about surgery is a major invasion of privacy, as it involves personal medical information. Many people choose not to have any surgery, whether because of cost, personal beliefs, or concern about surgical risks.
Gender-inclusive housing assignments refer to a housing option in which two or more students agree to share a multiple-occupancy bedroom without regard to the gender of the occupants.
This housing option provides you with increased choice in selecting roommates. It gives you additional responsibility for your own room assignments and choice of roommate(s). This policy also contributes to an institutional climate supportive of everyone. This change brings UNE into compliance with state and federal guidelines.
Students living in the suite-style residence halls reserved for upper-class students can share a suite with members of a different gender, but not a room. Additionally, no first-year students have access to gender-inclusive options, and this policy can help ease the transition to a new environment.
Gender-inclusive rooms will be available in Featherman Hall for first-year students. Upper-class students may select a space in any of the suite-style halls to designate as gender-inclusive. Consistent with the policy, all roommates must agree to this housing option.
No. This housing option is for any continuing student wishing to live in a residence hall space without a gender designation.
No. Although the University respects the privacy of individuals and will not require you to reveal your reason for requesting gender-inclusive housing, this option is not recommended for couples in romantic relationships.
We encourage you to maintain an open dialogue with your family so that they can be supportive of your housing decision. If you are over the age of 18, you are legally able to make decisions about your housing contracts, including signing and amending them. If you are under 18, you should discuss housing plans with your family, as they must provide parental consent.
There are, in fact, many transgender people at UNE. We cannot place a burden on them to disclose their identities to everyone just to access basic services like restrooms and housing. These changes allow the University to meet the needs of many people without forcing anyone to “out” themselves as transgender or gender-variant.
UNE’s Core Values include “Global Community and Diversity,” with emphases on embracing and learning from diversity, providing community service and civic engagement, striving for social justice, and abstaining from discriminatory actions. These values extend to all members of the UNE community and help to prepare you for a diverse society and workforce.
There are several UNE clubs and organizations that celebrate the diverse populations of our community. The Office of Intercultural Student Engagement advises or collaborates with these groups on both the Biddeford Campus and Portland Campus and encourages you to start new groups.
Alpha Omega is a welcoming fraternal community that honors the organization’s Judaic heritage, provides opportunities to attain professional excellence, and promotes access to oral health care for all.
Alpha Omega was founded on the pillars of fraternalism, professionalism, and Judaism. The objectives of the Chapter are to promote the study and practice of dentistry, maintain and improve professional standards in dentistry, and encourage research and education in dentistry.
Alpha Omega is based on the Portland Campus. Current students should access the Campus Groups Portal to learn more.
Black Student Union
The mission of the Black Student Union (BSU) focuses on promoting collaboration throughout the black community as well as spreading unity among students of other cultures at the University of New England. BSU is involved in numerous activities including putting together speakers and activities during Black History Month, as well as meetings and social gatherings at the Cultural Exchange Lounge.
BSU is an active student group that sponsors cultural and social events, provides leadership opportunities, and encourages networking amongst students of color, faculty, and professional staff. The BSU will partake in cultural festivals, trips to various museums, Black History Month convocation and a variety of other social and outreach activities. All students, faculty, and professional staff are invited to the weekly meetings and to participate in the development of the organization.
BSU is based on the Biddeford campus. For more information, email BSU advisor Ed Silva at email@example.com.
Christian Medical and Dental Association
Christian Medical and Dental Association (CMDA) educates, encourages, and equips Christian healthcare professionals to glorify God. Christian healthcare professionals glorify God by following Christ, serving with excellence and compassion, caring for all people, and advancing Biblical principles of healthcare within the Church and throughout the world.
CMDA is based on the Portland Campus. Current students should access the Campus Groups Portal to learn more.
Health Equality Alliance
COM’s queer-straight alliance advocating for LGBTQI students, providers, and patients
HEAL (Health Equality Alliance) is founded on the recognition of the need for medical students and the health care community at large to become better educated and sensitive to issues that uniquely affect the LGBTQI community. We aim to increase education, awareness, and open discussion regarding LGBTQI issues in health care. HEAL is open to all students, faculty, professional staff, and alumni and welcomes all identities from queer to straight and everything in between.
HEAL is based on the Biddeford campus. For more information, email HEAL faculty advisor Marilyn Gugliucci, Ph.D. at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hispanic Dental Association
The Hispanic Dental Association creates a unified voice for oral health students, educates classmates on the Spanish language, and promotes the oral health issues of the Hispanic community.
The Hispanic Dental Association is based on the Portland Campus. Current students should access the Campus Groups Portal to learn more.
An InterVarsity chapter at UNE.
1 Peter 2:9: "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."
Come and join us Thursday nights for a student lead Alpha Film Series! This is your chance to come learn about who Jesus is and what role he plays in your life. Additionally, if you would like to attend church, come join us on Sunday mornings at New Life Christian Fellowship in Biddeford. Christ is among us, where have you seen him today?
InterVarsity is based on the Biddeford campus. Current students should access the Get Involved Portal to learn more.
Muslim Student Association
The Muslim Student Association promotes and organizes activities that provide a sense of community among Muslims on the Portland campus. The association creates an environment for Muslim students to promote unity and representation. We recognize that students come from different backgrounds and are at varying levels in their own faith and we welcome all.
The Muslim Student Association is based on the Portland Campus. Current students should access the Campus Groups Portal to learn more.
Muslim Students' Association
The Muslim Students’ Association is an organization dedicated to connecting Muslim Students with each other and creating a space where they can work together to learn more about their faith and connect with their spirituality. A lot of students are living away from home for the first time and often adjusting to the changes, and balancing one's faith and schoolwork can prove to be a challenge at times. The MSA is aimed towards allowing students to share their stories and experiences and how they approach challenges that they face in their professional and academic life.
The Muslim Students’ Association is based on the Biddeford campus. Current students should access the Get Involved Portal to learn more.
Catholic student organization
Nor'easter Catholic is an undergraduate student organization on the Biddeford Campus supported by the Portland Archdiocese. The group holds weekly meetings to talk about faith and have dinner together.
Nor'Easter Catholic is based on the Biddeford campus. Current students should access the Get Involved Portal to learn more.
Student National Medical Association
The Student National Medical Association (SNMA) is a medical student organization dedicated to people of color and underserved communities. The group focuses on issues such as recruiting and retaining minority applicants, strengthening alumni/student relations, supporting the UNE College of Osteopathic Medicine’s efforts on increasing minority faculty, and assisting to build a culturally sensitive forum where all students can learn and share ideas.
SNMA is based on the Biddeford campus. Current students should contact the office of COM Recruitment, Student and Alumni Services to learn more.
Student National Pharmaceutical Association
The Student National Pharmaceutical Association (SNPhA) is dedicated to representing the views and ideas of minority pharmacists on critical issues affecting health care and pharmacy, as well as advancing the standards of pharmaceutical care among all practitioners.
SNPhA is based on the Portland Campus. Current students should access the Campus Groups Portal to learn more.
UNE’s LGBTQA+ student alliance
The Alliance is an undergraduate club on the Biddeford Campus that supports gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning students and allies. The Alliance helps make UNE a safer, more welcoming, and inclusive living and learning community by educating and building relationships between the LGBTQ community and the community of Allies and Advocates on campus. With weekly meetings and frequent programs including an annual “Coming Out” week in October and “UNE Gaypril Pride” month in April, The Alliance is an active, motivated, and crucial campus club that promotes diversity awareness and advocacy and educates the UNE community on LGBTQ issues.
The Alliance is based on the Biddeford Campus. Current students should access the Get Involved Portal to learn more.
UNE United is an undergraduate student club on the Biddeford Campus. The mission of UNE United is to promote awareness and appreciation of cultural diversity through on-campus educational and cultural programming and off-campus excursions. The club attracts students who are interested in learning about different people and cultures, learning from one another across real or perceived differences, and celebrating cultural traditions from around the world. UNE United is open to all UNE students.
United is based on the Biddeford campus. Current students should access the Get Involved Portal to learn more.
Religion and Spirituality
At the University of New England, we understand that spirituality is important to many members of our community. We are committed to creating an environment responsive to expression and exploration of your spiritual needs in our campus community.
Spirituality may include religious faith, affiliation with a particular religious group or community, values, beliefs, ethics, morals, and principles. The Office of Intercultural Student Engagement helps connect you with on- and off-campus opportunities and programs that explore spiritual wellness. Multi-faith events are held periodically on campus.
We can assist you in connecting with local places of worship and times of services. Don't worry if you do not have a car on campus. UNE offers several alternative transportation methods that you can take advantage to connect with off-campus services. To learn about our daily bus routes and more, visit our alternative transportation resource page.
Nor'easters Helping Nor'easters
UNE is a community of educators and learners who care about and for each other. If you are concerned about another member of the UNE community, please let us know.