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In non-binding vote, Wellesley College students back opening admissions to transgender men, nonbinary applicants

Aerial view of Wellesley College in Wellesley, Mass., Feb. 10, 2021. (AP)
Aerial view of Wellesley College in Wellesley, Mass., Feb. 10, 2021. (AP)

Students at Wellesley College voted in support of granting transgender men and nonbinary people eligibility for admission.

College officials acknowledged Tuesday's student-run, non-binding vote, but said in a statement that they would not change the college's policy.

"Although there is no plan to revisit its mission as a women’s college or its admissions policy, the College will continue to engage all students, including transgender male and nonbinary students, in the important work of building an inclusive academic community where everyone feels they belong," the statement said.

Opponents said letting people who identify as male apply to Wellesley would change the school's mission as a women's college.

Supporters said women's colleges were created to be safe spaces for people who have faced gender discrimination, and they argue that trans and nonbinary applicants should be considered because of that history.

In 2015, the college started allowing trans women to apply for admission. According to the policy, all those who "live as a woman and consistently identify as a woman" are eligible.

" 'Consistently' simply denotes a student’s commitment to her gender identity," reads the policy.

Following that change, the college welcomed its first openly trans students in 2017.

The college announced the outcome of Tuesday's vote, but said it will not release the vote counts or percentages.

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