Home College Towns How This One Minnesota College Is Changing the Future of Liberal Arts Culture

How This One Minnesota College Is Changing the Future of Liberal Arts Culture

How This One Minnesota College Is Changing the Future of Liberal Arts Culture

If you’re looking for a top college that offers an ivy-league level education, is LGBTQ friendly, has a big go-green initiative and has been voted several times as one of the leading national liberal arts colleges, you may want to check out Macalester College, as they are changing the culture in what you would typically find at a liberal arts college.

Located in Saint Paul, Minnesota, Macalester College was founded in 1874 and is a private, four-year college. Under Dean Hoppe, it has about 2,000 undergrad students in an urban setting that encompasses about 53 acres.

Ranked as one of the 2016 Best National Liberal Arts Colleges, you’ll find plenty of great ways that Macalester College is leading the way in innovation among colleges all over the United States.

Campus Pride: Equity and Equality

Macalester photo
Photo by cogdogblog

We noted that Macalester is leading the way for the LGBTQ community.

Named as one of the top LGBTQ-friendly universities in the United States for 3 years running, student life is noted to be excepionally diverse. Undergrads can choose an LGBTQ chapter to pledge, or find a club to join for gay, transgender, bi and progressive students.

The atmosphere is safe; dorm living is open and fun for students identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer. The Department of Multicultural Life works with the LGBTQ community to help provide an atmosphere that’s equal and respectful to all.

The school boasts of having LGBTQ events like it’s fall semester’s event, the Lavender Reception which helps the queer community learn about campus resources and support networks when they first arrive at campus. There is also a Lavender Graduation celebration for graduating LGBTQ seniors to celebrate their accomplishments and contributions to the school.

General Housing & All Gender Housing

Other great ways that the school is at the forefront of progressive liberal arts college culture can be found in housing. Housing is available for all students on and off campus, while freshmen and sophomores have to live at the Macalester campus location.

Here’s an area where Macalester is paving the way in making progressive changes. With gender neutral living spaces, the college offers several options in residence halls. Students can choose all gender (gender neutral) rooming options that allow for more freedom regardless of one’s sex or gender.

You can check out dorm living options at the following residence halls: GCA, Kirk, Doty 1, GDD, Bigelow, Language Houses, Summit House and Veggie Co-op, (the vegan only house). Kirk Hall, Bigelow, and Veggie Co-op have all-gender bathrooms allowing students privacy and the comfort of living as they choose.

Go Green Initiatives and Eco-Friendly Awareness

Photo by cogdogblog

While most liberal arts colleges boast of having a relatively minimal green initiatives, Macalester is doing a lot more. At this progressive school, students use recycled products on a daily basis; additionally, the campus has it’s own wind turbine and compost areas.

There’s also a Sustainability Advisory Committee that publishes a monthly Sustainable Scots Newsletter about environmentally friendly students have taken part in various projects including a semester long class assignment working with COP21 to teach students about environmental studies.

Students also signed the Climate Pledge along with 200 colleges in the United States to help the Obama Administration’s meeting at the United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Paris. Due to Macalester’s tremendous efforts, the school has received the AASHE (Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education) Gold Rating for sustainability on campus for its various achievements.


Nikki Newman Travel expert, writer for America Unraveled.


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