Gender Inclusive Living Experience (GILE) is a Theme Community open to anyone looking for a safe, inclusive, and supportive living experience. GILE is open to students of any gender identity or gender expression, and allies who have a reflective understanding of gender and are will actively contribute to an inclusive community. GILE residents live in a cluster of rooms on the same hallway and have access to the gender-inclusive restrooms on the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th floors.
- GILE is a partnership between Michigan Housing and the Spectrum Center. Residents can look forward to participating in programming and workshops related to LGBTQ+ identities and learning how to access resources on campus.
- Student and Professional Staff living in the building are trained to facilitate conversations around diversity and inclusion, and support the needs of students across a range of identities. There is always an on-call staff member available to help triage concerns as they arise.
- Students work directly with the Housing Information Office (HIO) as the contract holder when they choose housing. A parent/guardian’s signature will be required on the housing contract for students under the age of 18.
What is your favorite memory from your Theme Community experience so far this year?
“Within GILE, we organized a weekly Game Night! We all take one night of the week to spend time together and play games. There are snacks and it’s always a great time. It’s a lovely opportunity to take a break from our studies and be around other trans folk/allies. It’s always the high point of my weeks.”
What surprised you the most (in a positive way) about your Theme Community experience?
“I originally didn’t want to live in GILE; I just wanted a co-ed hall and access to an inclusive restroom. However, Bursley didn’t have one, so I was moved to GILE. I was surprised that I actually loved being around people who were like me. I originally didn’t want to be constantly reminded of my trans-ness, but with this group, I actually think about it less. Everyone is so accepting and aware. It’s easy to be around them. It honestly feels like a family.”
Why would you encourage other returning students to think about joining a Theme Community next year?
“Especially for first-year students, it’s really wonderful having a family base right away. We hold each other accountable and care for each other, but we still are able to have some space when we need it. We also live just down the hall from each other, so it feels like we really are an authentic family. Cheesy, maybe — but it feels like home.”
GILE Community Guidelines
By being a part of this community I agree to:
- Respect everyone’s gender and sexuality
- Value all social identities and how they intersect in individuals
- Respect and use desired names and pronouns
- Recognize that how and when someone chooses to share pieces of their identity is their choice
- Invite others into the conversation
- Recognize that we are all part of this community. Therefore, everyone’s voice and story has value and I will remember that their story is their truth.
- Continually reassess how we’re supporting each other and commit to improving when possible
- Acknowledge that confidentiality is important to create a safe space for individuals.
Students wishing to live in GILE should indicate their interest by filling out the Gender Inclusive Housing Form.
- Undergraduate students
- Participate in programs and events
- Attend weekly hall dinners