LGBTQA Leadership Scholarship

This annual $1,000 award will serve to support and recognize outstanding undergraduate students enrolled or planning to enroll at Rutgers- New Brunswick who have:

1) demonstrated financial need
2) demonstrative academic achievement
3) promoted LGBTQA rights by working to prevent discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, and/or who have worked to empower the LGBTQA community.

Historical Perspective

1969 was truly a pivotal year for the LGBT community. It was in the aftermath of the Stonewall Riots that the groundwork was laid for the emergence of the LGBT civil rights movement. Activists in communities across the United States began the long and arduous process of mobilizing local community members to make their need for civil rights known and put an end to discrimination and harassment by the police and other discriminatory authorities.

It was in this environment of change that a Rutgers University student, Lionel Cuffie (RCÂ’72 English), organized the Rutgers Homophile League, the second oldest collegiate LGBT organization in the United States. This organization sought to create a safe and nurturing environment for LGBT students attending Rutgers. The Homophile League also served to provide a new voice within the university community that would empower LGBT students to works towards making Rutgers a place free from harassment or discrimination.

Rutgers University once again made headlines in the late 1980’s when then University President Dr. Edward Bloustein, in response to a letter from the Rutgers University Lesbian/Gay Alliance, appointed a panel made up of students, faculty and administrators to analyze the needs of the LGBT community and make recommendations for carrying out the university’s policy that bans discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

Since those days, much has changed at Rutgers University. Yet, while the legacy of these early pioneers is significant, we here at Rutgers University cannot rest on the laurels of these past successes. To that end a committed group of alumni, administrators and faculty have joined together to create the LGBT Leadership Scholarship in the hopes of continuing to nurture and support the next generations of LGBT and allied activists who will continue to build upon the historical legacy of Rutgers past.

The LGBT Leadership Scholarship is designed to recognize students who demonstrate through personal experience and/or public commitments, a dedication to the interests of the LGBT community.

Purpose of the Scholarship

1. To encourage recipients to continue their academic studies and become community leaders working towards the prevention of discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

2. To build awareness of the academic achievements and community service of LGBT and allied students at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.

3. To create a more positive environment for LGBT students or allies, many who continue to encounter significant disadvantages as they strive towards becoming contributing citizens within the broader community.

4. To build a more positive image of LGBT people as invested members of our society.

Qualifications

1. Currently enrolled or planning to enroll as a full-time undergraduate student at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey – New Brunswick Campus.

2. Demonstrated involvement in promoting LGBT student activities at Rutgers Universities various campuses or, if an incoming student, demonstrated involvement in promoting LGBT activities while in High School

3. Demonstrated leadership in the promotion of a positive identity for LGBT students throughout the University or within the broader community as a whole.

4. Demonstrated academic achievement|Demonstrated financial need | Be in good academic standing

5. Willingness to be acknowledged as recipient via media photography and print

How are Recipients Chosen?

1. All applications deemed financially eligible will be reviewed by the scholarship panel that is comprised of representatives the New Brunswick Campus. This committee will make formal recommendations to Financial Aid.

The Lionel Cuffie Award for Activism and Excellence:

Each year this award is presented to a graduating senior who has been selected from among a number of nominees for service to LGBT communities on-campus and off-campus and who has maintained a grade point average of at least 3.0. The activist-scholar receives a plaque and a cash gift of $500.

Historical Perspective

1969 was truly a pivotal year for the LGBT community. It was in the aftermath of the Stonewall Riots that the groundwork was laid for the emergence of the LGBT civil rights movement. Activists in communities across the United States began the long and arduous process of mobilizing local community members to make their need for civil rights known and put an end to discrimination and harassment by the police and other discriminatory authorities.

It was in this environment of change that a Rutgers University student, Lionel Cuffie (RCÂ’72 English), organized the Rutgers Homophile League, the second oldest collegiate LGBT organization in the United States. This organization sought to create a safe and nurturing environment for LGBT students attending Rutgers. The Homophile League also served to provide a new voice within the university community that would empower LGBT students to works towards making Rutgers a place free from harassment or discrimination.

Rutgers University once again made headlines in the late 1980’s when then University President Dr. Edward Bloustein, in response to a letter from the Rutgers University Lesbian/Gay Alliance, appointed a panel made up of students, faculty and administrators to analyze the needs of the LGBT community and make recommendations for carrying out the university’s policy that bans discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

Since those days, much has changed at Rutgers University. Yet, while the legacy of these early pioneers is significant, we here at Rutgers University cannot rest on the laurels of these past successes. To that end a committed group of alumni, administrators and faculty have joined together to create the LGBT Leadership Scholarship in the hopes of continuing to nurture and support the next generations of LGBT and allied activists who will continue to build upon the historical legacy of Rutgers past.

The LGBT Leadership Scholarship is designed to recognize students who demonstrate through personal experience and/or public commitments, a dedication to the interests of the LGBT community.