Old Dominion University
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Division of Student Engagement and Enrollment Services

ODU Safe Space Committee


Links of Interest


 The Spectrum Floor

"Everyone deserves a home that provides welcome, security and comfort."

"ODU's effort to provide a harbor for young people marks an admirable advance in fighting discrimination..."


"ODU spokeswoman Jennifer Mullen Collins said the school based the concept on studies that showed students with support networks of people with similar interests had higher rates of retention, higher graduation rates and, in some cases, higher grade-point averages."


Read more from this article!




The Spectrum Floor is one of ODU's newest special interest housing communities (SIHCs). These communities offer you the opportunity to experience life with a small group of students who share similar majors, cultures, or interests. These groups can request that Housing & Residence Life set aside a floor section, building, or area within a residential community. During the application process, each group shares their vision of how their SIHC can have a positive impact on ODU and the overall residential experience.


The Spectrum Floor was proposed by the Safe Space Committee after reviewing data from a Spring 2011 survey of current students, who identified a need for more visible on-campus resources for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) students and their straight allies.




The Spectrum Floor will produce Monarch citizens who are multiculturally competent, civic-minded, and empowered. Participants will serve as goodwill ambassadors and agents of change to educate and transform their communities.


Target Audience


Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersex students and anyone passionate about equal ights for all students; mixed population of class standings; students may opt into this program (by self-selection).  


How to Sign Up


You may fill out our simple online interest form or contact safespace@odu.edu. Include your name and Univerity ID Number (UIN). You must fill out an application for on-campus housing, too.




12-20 spaces in the Quad. Residence hall security features include card-swipe access to the building, front desk staff, and live-in residence life staff members. Although we are not able to offer gender neutral housing, we hope to provide a supportive environment for the expression (and understanding) of gender identity.   




The Spectrum Floor is a supportive environment for LGBTQ students or anyone who is passionate about equal rights for all students. This living and learning community explores the depth of the human condition as it relates to sexual orientation in an academic setting.  Furthermore, the community facilitates academic success and personal development through programming, mentorship, service, and leadership opportunities.




·         Increase retention

·         Provide a supportive network of students, faculty, staff, and community members

·         Create opportunities for self-exploration and intellectual discourse

·         Promote holistic health and wellness

·         Facilitate mentorship opportunities

·         Create a sense of belonging

·         Engage students in the community


Learning Outcomes


As a result of participating in the Spectrum Floor, students will:


·         Develop skills in mentorship, advocacy, service, and leadership

·         Engage in meaningful interactions with allies on campus and in local agencies

·         Enhance their self-efficacy, self-awareness and acceptance

·         Learn strategies to improve their lifelong social and physical health

·         Understand privilege and ways to advocate for themselves and the communities to which they belong

·         Understand and advocate for the full range of gender identities and sexual orientations

·         Be aware of political action - both local and national in regards to GLBTQ rights

·         Develop appreciate for diversity and intercultural competence  


Safe Space Events