LGBTQ+ Community and Ally Resources


Studying abroad is a fantastic opportunity for all students. It offers the chance to explore a new country, experience a different culture, meet a diverse group of people, and grow as an individual. For LGBTQ+ students, studying abroad is also a great way to learn more about the international LGBTQ+ community and explore identity in a global context.

However, the LGBTQ+ study abroad experience can also come with unique challenges. At UM, we recognize those challenges and strive to prepare our study abroad students so they can have the most rewarding experience possible.

Things to Consider

LGBTQ+ rights and risk factors vary widely, both by country and within each country. Before choosing a study abroad program, consider how well each potential program aligns with your academic and professional goals, as well as your personal interests and lifestyle.

Questions to Ask

  • What laws pertain to people in your host country who identify as LGBTQ+?
  • What general attitude do people in your host country have toward members of the LGBTQ+ community?
  • How visible is the LGBTQ+ community in your host country?
  • How do mainstream and alternative media portray the LGBTQ+ community?
  • What LGBTQ+ resources are available at your host university? In your host city/country?
  • What are the cultural norms for men and women? For friendship and dating?
  • How safe is it for you to be out while you're abroad?
  • How risky is it for you to come out to fellow students, your host family, professors, etc.?
  • How openly discussed are topics such as sexual orientation and gender identity?
  • How well can your program accommodate special housing requests, such as single rooms, private baths, and/or changing roommates?
  • If you are going to a non-English speaking country, how might gendered language affect you and/or your safety?

palace lit by rainbow lights at night

(Photo Credit: Siska Gremmelprez)