LGBTQ+ Students Abroad

Depending on your sexual orientation, you may be granted different privileges or encounter different challenges abroad than you do at home. Since many of the ideas we have about sexual orientation and sexuality are culturally-based, students need to be aware of how this will affect their relationships with host nationals, cultural adjustment and reentry, and the overall study abroad experience.

Things to Consider Before Going Abroad

Adapted from Northwestern University's "Identity & Diversity: LGBTQ Students Abroad" webpage: http://www.northwestern.edu/studyabroad/guide/identity-and-diversity/lgb... 

  • Does your right to be LGBTQ+ in the U.S. conflict with the religious or cultural values and traditions of your host country?
  • How will you reconcile your human rights with the cultural values of your host society?
  • Are there safety considerations that you should be aware of?
  • What are gender relations typically like in your host country?
  • What is considered to be typical male and female social behavior in your host culture?
  • What is the social perception of members of the LGBTQ+ community in your host country?
  • What roles do transgender people play in your host culture?

Things to Consider While Abroad

Adapted from Diversity Abroad's "Diversity & Inclusion Abroad Guide: LGBTQ+ Students Abroad": https://www.diversityabroad.com/guides/diversity-and-inclusion-abroad-guide/lgbtq-students-abroad

  • How will I keep myself safe while I'm abroad? Should I come out to my host family or my roommates?
  • What are the cultural norms for dating and friendship in my host country?
  • What kinds of LGBTQ+ resources are there in my host country? What kinds of communities or support networks exist?
  • What is the LGBTQ+ population like in my host country? How large and visible is it? How do they represent themselves?
  • What are the terms and definitions used in my host country to talk about LGBTQ+ issues?

Highlighted Resources

Suggested Articles

Suggested Websites

  • Global Gayz. https://www.globalgayz.com/  This website offers brief summaries regarding the status of LGBTQ+ rights in countries around the world.
  • International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association. http://ilga.org/
  • National Center for Transgender Equality. “Issues, Travel.” http://www.transequality.org/issues/travel This site offers information and tips for transgender individuals who may be concerned about screening procedures at airports during travel.

Additional Resources

Articles

Websites