Cultural Diversity

Notre Dame is a community rich in diversity and committed to inclusion. Students travel from around the country and the world, seeking the academic excellence for which Notre Dame is known. What they find is a place where they can learn about other cultures, beliefs, and perspectives. They find a place where they can engage with peers, be supported by mentors, and conduct research with some of the foremost scholars in the world. Students are welcomed into a community where they can come together in large group activities or find the friends and space to call their own. Our students are becoming culturally competent, global citizens while studying in a community that is growing more diverse. Please select from one of the following:

Gender Relations Center

As an office within the Division of Student Affairs, the Gender Relations Center (GRC) promotes moral formation consistent with Catholic identity, mission and values in an effort to create a healthy culture at the University of Notre Dame.  As the first of its kind nationwide, the GRC designs and implements programs about healthy relationships, sexuality, and gender. Committed to the spiritual, emotional and intellectual development of all students, the GRC seeks to engage the campus in respectful dialogue and seeks to build a community that fully honors the human dignity of each person as a child of God. The GRC serves the Notre Dame community through:

  • Educational initiatives
  • Outreach services
  • Pastoral care

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Multicultural Student Programs and Services

Multicultural Student Programs and Services administers the programs and services specifically designed to assist with the retention and the academic success of traditionally underrepresented students.  The academic initiatives focus on providing faculty mentors, exposing historically underrepresented undergraduates to research opportunities, and networking with academicians and alumni in their area of interest.  The office also serves as a vehicle for students to explore issues of diversity by sponsoring cultural programs, advising ethnic or traditionally underrepresented organizations, and serving as a multicultural resource center.  The office provides these services to help our racially underrepresented population achieve their goals while maintaining their cultural identity. The office facilitates diversity training and workshops to create dialogue between majority and ethnic students regarding the importance of celebrating their cultures and discuss topics related to race and current events.

The Office of Multicultural Student Programs and Services is located in the Intercultural Center on the second floor of the LaFortune Student Center.

Resources for LGBTQ Students and Allies

The University is committed to fostering an environment of welcome and mutual respect for students who identify as LGBTQ that is grounded in its Catholic mission.

The University has set forth a pastoral plan, Beloved Friends and Allies, to support the holistic development and formation of students who identify as LGBTQ, as well as all students on our campus. It reflects The Spirit of Inclusion at Notre Dame which states that the University deplores any offenses against the inviolable dignity of every person as the beloved of God. The University calls for an abiding spirit of inclusion within the Notre Dame community.  Notre Dame calls all students to be friends and allies of one another. 

The Division of Student Affairs envisions this comprehensive, multi-faceted pastoral plan to respond to the various expressed needs of members of the student body who identify as LGBTQ and simultaneously to cultivate deeper understanding and support for our Catholic Christian ideal. Within this context, the University offers the following resources to our students: 

The Gender Relations Center (GRC) along with other departments and relevant student groups seeks to educate all students about the inclusive nature of community at Notre Dame. They provide opportunities for ongoing exploration of and conversation concerning a Catholic understanding of the call to holiness of life. Collaborators include Campus Ministry, Multicultural Student Programs and Services, the Student Activities Office, the Career Center, the University Counseling Center, and the Institute for Church Life.

The Assistant Director for LGBTQ Student Concerns in the GRC, works closely with student peer educators to train and educate appropriate members of the campus community, collaborates with other campus units providing programs and initiatives for LGBTQ and heterosexual student support, holistic development, and formation, and advises the recognized student organization, PrismND.  This person can be reached in the GRC at 574-631-9340.   

Campus Ministry provides a designated staff member whose duties include working with students impacted by LGBTQ issues.

The University Counseling Center offers individual counseling and support groups: 574-631-7336.

Monthly hours for drop-in conversation and support are available. Conversations are in a safe space and confidentiality is assured. The GRC staff and other departments coordinate these events with peer educators. For more information, contact the GRC at 574-631-9340 or

PrismND is a recognized student organization designed to provide peer-to-peer support, direct service opportunities, and friendship for LGBTQ students and their allies. For more information or to get involved, email PrismND at or visit PrismND’s website.  

For more information, please see the University’s Pastoral Plan, Beloved Friends and Allies: A Pastoral Plan for the Support and Holistic Development of GLBTQ and Heterosexual Students at the University of Notre Dame, released in December 2012.

International Student and Scholar Affairs

International Student and Scholar Affairs (ISSA), a part of Notre Dame International, supports and advises international students and scholars at the University of Notre Dame. ISSA provides a wide array of support services and educational and cultural programs for international students, scholars and their families. Services include providing pre-arrival correspondence, coordinating International Student Orientation and advising international students and clubs. Programs include International Education Week, the International Ambassador Program and the Family Friendship Program. In addition, the ISSA team helps Notre Dame-sponsored international students, scholars and their dependents maintain lawful immigration status. The ISSA staff educates and reminds all international students about immigration rules, responsibilities, deadlines and benefits. They also process immigration requests, offer helpful information sessions and advise students on a variety of immigration topics.

Office of Institutional Equity

The Office of Institutional Equity is committed to promoting an equitable educational and work environment that is free from discrimination, harassment, and retaliation in accordance with Title VII of The Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, other applicable federal and state laws, and University policy.

The Office of Institutional Equity also strives to foster an inclusive campus environment that embraces the talents and achievements of all individuals regardless of race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, age, or genetic information. To fulfill our mission, the Office of Institutional Equity provides:

  • Oversight of and support for the University’s efforts to comply with all applicable federal and state civil rights laws and Notre Dame’s policies prohibiting discrimination, harassment, and retaliation;
  • Consultation, training, and resources to the University community regarding equal opportunity, affirmative action, diversity, and preventing discrimination, harassment, and retaliation; and
  • A mechanism for responding to complaints of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation.

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