Sex-segregated housing may not be the best option for some students. To meet this need, the Department of Residence Life and Housing offers the option of gender-inclusive housing.

Each student’s needs are different; therefore, requests are reviewed on a case-by case basis. These options will help provide students with living spaces that create a comfortable and safe living environment. Gender-inclusive housing options are not available for romantic couples, regardless of gender.

What's available

Option 1: Gender Inclusive Community

Students can select this specialized community option on their Personalize Your Experience form. Students who participate in this community will have the opportunity to select a room with a roommate who is not of the same legal sex. Gender-Inclusive Housing (GIH) spaces have been identified in a variety of buildings on campus in which the room or apartment spaces offer a private bathroom. Students who participate in this community must also sign the gender inclusive housing agreement.

Option 2: Contact to identify your room needs

Requests for gender-inclusive housing outside of the Gender Inclusive Community must be approved by the Department of Residence Life and Housing, and is dependent on availability These options may include, but are not limited to:

  • Mixed-gender suites (male, female, gender non-conforming, transgender, etc.) and apartments.
  • A single room on the floor of the student’s gender identity/expression, but not the student’s legal sex (available only where a single-stall bathroom exists).
  • Roommates of the opposite legal sex but same gender identity/expression on a floor of their gender identity/expression where a single-stall bathroom exists.
  • Roommates of different legal sexes with a private bathroom.
  • A single room on the floor of the student’s legal sex, if a private bathroom exists.

There are various costs associated with some of these options. Options that include roommates/suitemates/apartment-mates require agreement from all parties to proceed.

Staff will not ask for any more information than is required to meet the student’s housing needs, and, to the extent permitted by law, all disclosed information regarding a student’s gender identity will be kept strictly confidential. In order to provide support for the needs of current and incoming students for whom sex-segregated housing may not be the best option, please email as early in the process as possible so we may offer the widest range of housing options.

Option 3: Select a room without contacting to express a specific need.

Room options that do not require involvement from our office include, but are not limited to:

  • Roommates of the same legal sex, but different gender expressions, in any building.

Our commitment

The University of Akron does not tolerate any form of discrimination, including but not limited to discrimination in student housing assignments. Specifically, the University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, national or ethnic origin, disability, military status, genetic information, or status as a veteran. The University of Akron will continue to ensure that all students, including all LGBTQ+ students, are able to live, learn, and thrive in a safe and welcoming environment.

Definitions to guide you through this document:

The term “gender expression” refers to all of a person’s external characteristics and behaviors, such as dress, grooming, mannerisms, speech patterns and social interactions that are socially identified with a particular gender. Social or cultural norms can vary widely and some characteristics that may be accepted as masculine, feminine, or neutral in one culture may not be assessed similarly in another culture. A person’s gender expression may also be referred to as one’s “gender presentation” or “performed gender.”

Everyone has a gender identity and everyone expresses a gender identity. The term gender identity, which is distinct from the term sexual orientation, or attraction, refers to a person’s deeply felt psychological sense of gender, in other words, who someone is intrinsically. A person's gender identity may or may not correspond to one’s body, assigned biological sex at birth, or gender expression. Gender Identity can be seen on a spectrum, and does not necessarily apply to the gender binary of male/female.

The biologically-based presumption that reproductive capability determines a person’s label of female or male. Sex is defined by physical aspects that include chromosomes, hormones, and genitalia. This category is usually based on a visual assessment of a baby’s genitalia at birth. The University Registrar currently relies on a student’s legal sex for purposes of identification.