Resources for Faculty & Staff

As a member of IWU's faculty or staff, you have an important role for shaping students' IWU experience and the campus community. 

Understanding the Basics

  • We're often discussing sexual orientation. Don't reference it as sexual preference, as it is not an individual's preference, it's just who they are. 
  • Gender identity refers to how a person labels themself. 
  • When we reference LGBQA TGNCI, LGBQA is the initialism for sexuality (lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer/questioning, asexual/aromantic) and TGNCI is the initialism for gender identity (transgender, gender non-conforming, intersex).

Tips on Being an Ally

  • Use people's correct pronouns. 
    • If you struggle to use "they" as a singular pronoun, use it to identify something in your life - a stuffed animal, your car, etc. so you can get used to using it.
    • If you're not sure of somebody's pronouns, let them know yours and ask how they would like to be referenced. 
    • Including your personal pronouns in your email signature can be a great way to show that you're an ally.
  • Use non-gendered terms, such as folks or y'all instead of ladies and gentlemen. Use firefighter instead of fireman, police officer instead of policeman, server instead of waiter or waitress, etc. 
  • Ask students what they'd like to be called! This helps not only with name changes, but also with nicknames and makes it easy to start out on the right foot. 
  • Be familiar with where gender neutral bathrooms are in the building you work or teach in.