The GSRC maintains a list of faculty, staff and student participants who volunteer to be part of the Ally Finder. Please contact the GSRC if you are looking for supportive faculty or staff in a particular building, department or community resource and we can assist you.
The Ally Program is a campus-wide program designed to foster a welcoming and supportive campus environment for LGBTQ individuals by creating a visible network of allies.
The program supports the Division of Academic Affairs core value of establishing an inclusive community. The Ally Program creates opportunities for people to learn about LGBTQ identity and builds connections between the broader campus community and LGBTQ individuals.
Program volunteers display the "NIU Ally" symbol on door signs and buttons to visibly identify themselves as supporters of the LGBTQ population. They are familiar with the complexities faced by those who identify as LGBTQ and resources which may be present on or off campus.
NIU faculty, staff, graduate assistants, residence hall staff and students who want to visibly show their support of people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and/or queer, can volunteer to be part of the Ally Program. Individuals interested in participating must attend the two-part training workshop to learn more about how to be an effective ally. After completing the training, volunteers sign an ally agreement form which defines their roles and responsibilities as part of the NIU Ally Program.
First and foremost, just by posting an NIU ally sign, volunteers send a visible message of welcome to LGBTQ people. They also send a message to the entire campus that respect for LGBTQ people is one aspect of Northern's commitment to diversity. Ally Program volunteers actively look for ways to integrate LGBTQ people into activities and services, and consider ways that these may need to be adapted to be welcoming to the LGBTQ population. In addition, Ally Program volunteers serve as informal resource persons who can provide support to LGBTQ people and help them access campus resources. Volunteers also offer a respectful environment for anyone who wishes to discuss concerns related to sexual orientation or gender identity.
A mandatory two-part training workshop provides a foundation of knowledge needed to be an effective ally. Training workshops are offered periodically throughout the year. To find out about upcoming workshops, visit our events page. To sign up for a workshop, please complete our ally training registration form (the form will be activated when registration is open). Each workshop is limited to 20 people, so don't delay in signing up!
The Ally Program training assists volunteers in learning more about how to be an effective ally. The workshops are informal and interactive. In part I, participants learn more about the experiences and concerns of LGBTQ people. Part II focuses on ideas and strategies for how to be an effective ally. The workshops introduce participants to campus and community resources, and provides an opportunity for volunteers to meet other participants in the program.