International Sociology and International Sociology Reviews

Topic of the Month, October 2020

LGBT and US college campuses

‘LGBT and US college campuses’ is our Topic of the Month for October 2020. On this topic, enjoy Free Access all month to this article by Susan Rankin (Rankin & Associates Consulting, USA), Jason C Garvey (University of Vermont, USA) and Antonio Duran (Auburn University, USA) published in International Sociology, A retrospective of LGBT issues on US college campuses: 1990–2020. Read on to know more about the authors’ trajectory and work:

Susan Rankin

Jason C Garvey

Antonio Duran

Why are you working on this topic? Could you share an experience, a fact or a person who made you get engage on that research?

S. Rankin: My 40-year research agenda in higher education has focused on the experiences of queer-spectrum and trans-spectrum people, with specific emphasis on US higher education. My interest in the topic stems from my own experiences as a queer-identified, woman practitioner-scholar in higher education and the stories of queer-/trans-identified colleagues and students.

J.C. Garvey: My educational journey and queer positionality are etched into the core of who I am as a student, scholar, and person. In all that I do, I want to uplift and support collective liberation of QT people through education. I am deeply indebted to Drs. Sue Rankin and Noah Drezner for the mentorship they provided me early in my scholarly career, particularly related to my pursuit in queer and trans higher education scholarship. I am a more confident and justice-centered scholar because of their support and guidance.

A. Duran: My interest in queer and trans research in higher education stems from the belief that institutions and those that work within them have the potential to better serve students who identify as part of this community. Specifically, I seek to understand how systemic forms of oppression like heterosexism, trans oppression, and racism function at higher education institutions in order to better address these issues. I came to this line of work based on my own experiences developing in my queer and Latino identities within a college environment.

Do you have any video, recorded conference, or online material that you would like us to share with others?

S. Rankin: You can direct folks to our website at and click on the “literature” tab. The research offered on this page serves as the foundation for our current climate assessment research that is inclusive of gender and sexual identities.

J.C. Garvey: Here is my faculty profile website

Read on to know more about the authors’ academic trajectory:

Dr. Rankin retired from the Pennsylvania State University in 2013 where she most recently served as an Associate Professor of Education and Associate in the Center for the Study of Higher Education. Dr. Rankin also served as the Head Coach for Women’s Softball at Penn State from 1979-1996. Dr. Rankin has presented and published widely on the intersections of identities and the impact of sexism, genderism, racism and heterosexism in the academy and in intercollegiate athletics. Dr. Rankin’s most recent publications include the 2010 State of Higher Education for LGBT People, The Lives of Transgender People, the 2011 NCAA Student-Athlete Climate Study, and the 2016 United States Transgender Survey. Dr. Rankin has collaborated with over 200 institutions/organizations in implementing climate assessments and developing strategic initiatives. Dr. Rankin is the recipient of the ACPA 2008 Voice of Inclusion Medallion and 2015 Diamond Honoree recognizing her outstanding and sustained contributions to higher education and student affairs.

Dr. Garvey is an Associate Professor and Program Coordinator for the Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration Program, and also serves as a Faculty Associate for the Leadership and Social Change Undergraduate Learning Community, both at the University of Vermont. His scholarship, teaching, and service are closely tied to his educational journey as a queer person. His research examines student affairs and college classroom contexts primarily using quantitative methods, with particular attention to uplifting queer and trans collegians. Prior to his faculty appointment, Dr. Garvey worked in student services across a variety of functional areas, including academic advising, LGBTQ student involvement and advocacy, undergraduate research, and student affairs assessment. He received his PhD in College Student Personnel Administration from the University of Maryland, with a Certificate in Measurement, Statistics, and Evaluation.

Dr. Duran is currently an Assistant Professor at Auburn University in the Administration of Higher Education program. Dr. Duran started out as a first-generation college student at New York University where he first learned about the field of higher education. From there, he attended Miami University and received his master’s degree in the Student Affairs in Higher Education program. It was during his time as a master’s student that he fell in love with research and teaching which led him to acquire his PhD in Higher Education and Student Affairs at The Ohio State University. His academic journey is always focused on bettering the conditions for those with minoritized backgrounds in the academy. Knowing that others have invested in him greatly, he seeks to do the same with his students, colleagues, and with the higher education field.