RI Higher Education
1:16 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

URI Breaks Ground On New Center For LGBTQ Community

The University of Rhode Island broke ground this morning on a center for the school’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer community. The center is unique among college campuses.

An artist rendering of the center, which will house offices, a conference room, and a multi-use spaces.
Credit URI

URI says it’s the only school in the nation to design and build a center specifically for the LGBTQ community.  State officials were on hand to celebrate the groundbreaking, including Governor Lincoln Chafee, and state senator Frank Ferri, who championed Rhode Island’s push for legal same-sex marriages.  Annie Russell is the center’s director.

“The building is located in the main gateway of our campus. And I think that sends a message that URI is about inclusion; that there is a space and a voice for LGBTQ students on this campus," said Russell.

The University has faced criticism from some for being an unfriendly place for queer identifying students.  The four-thousand square foot center will cost about two-million dollars, and is expected to open in spring 2015.

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