Transgender Women Now Welcome at Spelman College

In the wake of the U.S. military’s ban on transgender service members, Spelman College is set to open its doors to transgender women with the adoption of a new admissions policy.

The historically black liberal arts women’s college in Atlanta announced Tuesday that transgender women would soon be eligible to attend the women-only school.

Last year, the school convened a task force to reconsider its admissions policy. After a year of research, they decided to admit transgender women to the college.

“Like same-sex colleges all over the country, Spelman is taking into account evolving definitions of gender identity in a changing world and taking steps to ensure that our policies and plans reflect those changes in a manner that is consistent with our mission and the law,” said Spelman President Mary S. Campbell in a statement.

Under the policy change, Spelman will consider application candidates students who “consistently live and self-identify as women, regardless of their gender assignment at birth.”

The admissions policy will take effect this year for students enrolling for the 2018-2019 academic year.

Candidates must self-identify as a woman on the application and must provide supporting application materials to verify the self-identification. Applicants will also have the option to self-disclose as transgender on the application.

Though Spelman does not admit male students — including those who self-identify and live consistently as men, regardless of assignment at birth — once admitted, any student who fulfills graduation requirements will be awarded a degree from the college. If a woman is admitted and transitions to a male, the school will permit them to continue to matriculate at and graduate from Spelman.

Spelman says it is still “committed to its founding mission of education women of African descent.”

“In adopting this admissions policy, Spelman continues its fervent belief in the power of the Spelman sisterhood,” Campbell said. “Students who choose Spelman come to our campus prepared to participate in a women’s college that is academically and intellectually rigorous, and affirms its core mission as the education and development of high-achieving black women.”

An implementation committee will convene this school year to consider the impact the new policy has on the campus.

Students and parents who have concerns about the policy change are encouraged to visit the FAQ page of the school’s website.

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Tatyana Hopkins – Washington Informer Contributing Writer

Tatyana Hopkins has always wanted to make the world a better place. Growing up she knew she wanted to be a journalist. To her there were too many issues in the world to pick a career that would force her to just tackle one. The recent Howard University graduate is thankful to have a job and enjoys the thrill she gets from chasing the story, meeting new people and adding new bits of obscure information to her knowledge base. Dubbed with the nickname “Fun Fact” by her friends, Tatyana seems to be full of seemingly “random and useless” facts. Meanwhile, the rising rents in D.C. have driven her to wonder about the length of the adverse possession statute of limitations (15 years?). Despite disliking public speaking, she remembers being scolded for talking in class or for holding up strangers in drawn-out conversations. Her need to understand the world and its various inhabitants frequently lands her in conversations on topics often deemed taboo: politics, religion and money. Tatyana avoided sports in high school she because the thought of a crowd watching her play freaked her out, but found herself studying Arabic, traveling to Egypt and eating a pigeon. She uses social media to scope out meaningful and interesting stories and has been calling attention to fake news on the Internet for years.

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