Boston University president Robert A. Brown has approved gender neutral housing as an option for most students, allowing the school to begin offering it as early as the upcoming fall semester, BU said today in a statement.
“This is about empowering students to make choices about how they live and giving them a greater measure of control over their college experience,” Dean of Students Kenneth Elmore said in the statement. "This is really about your choice of who you live with. Your preference about gender and how you perceive it is really not our concern.”
To date, a student could choose another roommate of the same sex, the statement said. But now two or more students will now be permitted to share a bedroom, a suite, or an apartment in certain buildings across campus, regardless of their gender.
The statement said that in adopting the new policy, BU joins at least 90 colleges and universities nationwide.
In the Boston-area, Northeastern University, MIT, Harvard University, Tufts University, and Brandeis University all offer gender-neutral housing options.
In a 2012 survey conducted by the BU student government, nearly 2,000 students supported gender neutral housing. Approximately 500 students said they would choose the option themselves.