Strategies for student services for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students in dental schools.J Dent Educ. 2004 Jun; 68(6):623-32.JD
The purpose of this article is to explore issues that pertain to the needs of gay men, lesbians, and bisexual and transgender (GLBT) students as a subgroup in U.S. dental schools. The increasing visibility of GLBT persons in all aspects of life is one aspect of the changing face of the U.S. population. Increasingly, there is dialogue about issues related to GLBT persons, their nontraditional families, and their full engagement in society. Recent court decisions, changing policies in states and municipalities, and increasing acceptance in society promote inclusion. Likewise, this dialogue has extended into academic life. In medicine and nursing, GLBT issues include the needs of GLBT patients, the mentoring of faculty and administration, and acculturation of students in a dynamic college environment. Increasing the acceptance of GLBT persons and enhancing the value of diversity throughout the community and within the profession are challenges that must be met. In addition, fostering positive behaviors in a multicultural environment is a priority that is recognized in business and academe. In an effort to assess the present situation in U.S. dental schools, a survey was developed to gather data about support services provided for GLBT students. Based on the results of the survey, a series of recommendations are made to meet the needs of GLBT students, faculty, staff, and administrators in dental education institutions.