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LGBT Summer Schools for Young Professionals

LGBTI youth around the world are looking to access programs around the global to occupy their summertime and enrich their learning experiences. Many of the summer schools and educational leadership programs that run during the summer season are open to and cater their courses toward young people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or intersex. These schools are open throughout the summer season and most accept applications starting in the early to late spring.

Gendered Intelligence is a summer school hosted in the United Kingdom that works with the trans community to provide education and assistance to transgender youth and those who interact with them on a daily basis. They provide a multitude of services that assist transgender youth and support their education and growth. London, Leeds, and Bristol are their main areas where they offer their assistance. Though their programs are for trans and gender queer youth up to the age of twenty, they are open to people outside their age groups to reach out and seek help. They offer a summer program for trans youth ages eleven to seventeen. Their application process is simple with a few questions about past history with the program and allergies that the organization should be aware of. The fee for their camp ranges depending on economic standing.

Mosaic LGBT Youth Centre is a London based LGBTI organization for Londoners age thirteen to nineteen. The organization offers youth clubs to young people who identify or are figuring out their sexuality. Mentoring is a benchmark of the work that Mosaic does to support the LGBTI youth in London. Through weekly appointments set up within the centre, Mosaic allows LGBTI young people the opportunity to talk openly about their experiences and issues. They offer both summer and winter programs to youths in the community and provide an open library of books and media that are of interest to the LGBTI community. Their weeklong summer program provides LGBTI youth a safe space to interact with others like them. The camp organizes games, events, classes, workshops, and socials that get the kids interacting with each other in a nonthreatening way that allows them to grow. They have a fixed fee for all participants that covers the activities and food. With an open policy toward LGBTI refugees within the community, Mosaic stands out as a great summer program for international LGBTI youth.

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CampOut is an LGBTI summer school for teens ages thirteen to seventeen. Based in Australia, CampOut is a nonprofit and totally volunteer run organization that each year hosts summer classes that get LGBTI youth out into the wilderness to learn how to empower themselves and their community. Their main mission is to provide LGBTI youth a safe space to be who they are without the fear of being judged. Through their website, parents and kids are able to read up on the different experiences they might have at camp and watch videos of past attendees.

Camp Ten Trees is an American based school for children that come from non-traditional families or families where more than one guardian identifies as LGBTI. They hold their summer program every year in August. Certified instructors work with the kids to build interpersonal skills, community support, and self-esteem. There is also a separate portion for LGBTI identifying youth that is open to LGBTI teens aged thirteen to seventeen. Both camps offer an array of outdoor and crafting activities that will make summers memorable moments for the youths that attend.

InsideOut is a New Zealand organization that offers services to LGBTI youth around New Zealand. It is mainly run by volunteers and donations from the community. The organization hosts a podcast and radio show for LGBTI teens and performs outreach work into schools. They allow LGBTI young people to come together in a safe environment that nurtures their differences and helps them grow. InsideOut offers a weekend long camp in early spring for LGBTI youths that focuses on building community and fostering diversity. LGBTI professionals and educators who work in New Zealand are encouraged to get involved to shape the lives of the next generation of LGBTI Aotearoa leaders.

Camp fYrefly is Canada’s LGBTI summer leadership program that is designed by educators, professionals, child workers, and community members. The camp teaches from an art-based standpoint, so many of their activities and workshops have music, dance, and writing at the heart of the programs. Their summer training courses vary depending on year and location. They have three locations that host their camps. Volunteers and interested applicants can apply to either the Ontario, Saskatchewan, or Edmonton camp.

The Naming Project is based in a faith based American school in the state of Minnesota where Christian LGBTI youth can take part in activities with others in their community while upholding their religious standings. Though it takes place in Minnesota, the program is open to applicants from across America who want to take part in the ministry’s activities for LGBTI youth. The camp is for teens between the ages of fourteen and eighteen who identify as LGBTI or an ally who wants to take part in the diverse experiences and build on the work the Project is doing to bridge the gap between faith and the LGBTI community. The camp accepts mailed in applications for their summer program.

The Youth Project is a Nova Scotia based LGBTI nonprofit organization that works with LGBTI youths under the age of twenty-five. Their services include a resource library, social events, medical referrals, support groups, summer programs, and more. What is unique about the Youth Project is that it is an entirely youth directed program. They offer three different summer programs that take place from July through August. Seahorse is their LGBTI branch for all youths who identify within the LGBTI community. Coyote is for youths that identify as transgender or non cisgendered. And Breton is for LGBTI youths and their allies.

The University of Vermont offers two courses throughout the summer that focus on gender and sexuality. Both classes are offered to currently enrolled students or new students looking to gain some extra credit over the summer. The university is located in the United States, but the classes are each offered online for distant and international learners. Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies examines both sexuality and gender through an anthropological standpoint that explores the cultural implications and constructions of LGBTI people within society. Their other course is Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies: Gender, Sex, Race, and Culture which is an anthropology course that explores cultural constructs and how they relate to LGBTI issues and gender relations. Each course offers three credits.

SOAS the Summer School of the University of London offers two LGBTI focused courses that provide students with the groundwork to study within the field. Each course is only open to students who have finished one year of undergraduate studies. Queer Cinema in Asia is an on-campus course that’s held at Russell Square in London. It is offered on a full-time basis only and explores the development of LGBTI themes and storylines that are present in films from Asian countries. Gender and Conflict is a full-time on campus course that examines gender and sexuality relations between all types of people in society. Enrollment begins in mid-spring

Uppsala International Summer Session is a Sweden based summer school that offers tons of programs to its students that help them gain international education and form cross cultural bonds with other learners from around the world. They offer beginning courses and advanced ones for students learning at every level. Their Gender and Sexuality in Scandinavia course covers Scandinavian history, gender relationships, and sexuality inequality and how it relates to Scandinavian modern society. Students may gain up to four credits upon completion and passing the end of course test.

LGBTI summer courses and programs are available to a worldwide base of learners from many different backgrounds. They explore a lot of topics that are valuable to LGBTI young professionals working on the global stage. And for people who do not identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, or queer can also benefit from the learning experience that allows them to see into other peoples lives and issues they are facing.