UC Applicants May Be Asked if They're Gay
Question aims to meet needs of campus LGBT communities
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Mar 30, 2012 2:19 AM CDT
Updated Mar 30, 2012 3:30 AM CDT
The UC-Berkeley campanile towers over the region.   (?D.H. Parks)

(Newser) – University of California and California State campus officials are making plans to ask for students' sexual orientation on application and enrollment forms, reports the Los Angeles Times. The move would make the state educational system the largest in the nation to request such information. Providing answers would be voluntary. The change is aimed at fulfilling a state law aimed at gauging the size of campus lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities in order to judge whether enough services, such as counseling, are being offered to them. LGBT activists are generally encouraged by the change, but also concerned that the information might be used against students.

The question "sends a positive message to LGBT students, and creates an environment that is inclusive and welcoming," said a UC spokesman. Some faculty members find the question too intrusive, while others think avoiding the matter incorrectly signals that there's something shameful about being part of the LGBT community. The questions will likely first appear on UC enrollment forms next year.