Stanford’s Weiland Health Initiative joins World Association for Sexual Health

The Weiland Health Initiative, a partnership between Vaden Health Center and Queer Student Resources (QSR) at Stanford University, has been invited to become a voting member of the World Association for Sexual Health (WAS), the preeminent global organization concerned with sexual health and rights.

“This is a significant achievement, as it reflects a global recognition of our program here at Stanford as well as the opportunity for global participation in sexual health-related issues,” said INGE HANSEN, co-founder and manager of the Weiland Health Initiative.

Adds Lily Zheng ’17: “As a trans advocate and activist who has had the opportunity to work with Weiland during my time as a Stanford student, I see this as a powerful acknowledgement of Weiland’s commitment to communities of all genders and sexualities.”

Weiland Health Initiative logo
Weiland Health Initiative

The initiative began as a small-scale Stanford project for two years before it was officially launched in fall quarter 2011. Funding for the project came from a gift from the late Ric Weiland, a Stanford graduate and software pioneer.

The Weiland Health Initiative offers a number of innovative resources and programs each year that are geared toward promoting student mental health and wellness across the gender and sexual identities spectrum.

Many of these programs are designed with the goal of offering education and training to Stanford faculty and staff so that they can be best equipped to support diverse student needs. These educational/training programs include:

  • An annual symposium on gender and/or sexual health which is free to the Stanford community
  • On-demand training and education on gender diversity for faculty and staff (nearly 1,000 Stanford faculty and staff members received Weiland gender inclusivity training last year)
  • A biweekly clinical consultation group on gender and sexual diversity for clinicians who work at CAPS & Vaden Medical Services
  • A 10-week clinical didactic program for CAPS clinicians which equips them to specialize in gender and sexuality issues in psychotherapy
  • An annual educational Gender and Sexual Diversity Field Trip for Stanford community members

Weiland also offers resources to meet specific student needs, such as:

  • Drop-in Gender & Sexual Identity counseling hours offered at Vaden Health Center and at Terra House
  • Creation of a number of educational brochures on gender and sexual health, including “The Unofficial Guide to Trans Resources at Stanford”
  • Academic courses (and lectures) on gender and sexual diversity topics, including Transgender Studies, Challenging Sex & Gender Dichotomies in Medicine, and Sexual Diversity and Health
  • Small grants which support students in attending conferences or conducting research related to gender & sexual diversity and health

New this year, Weiland will be partnering with Residential Education to create and support a Weiland Health Associate student staff position in Terra House, Stanford’s unofficial queer-themed house. The student staff in this role will offer resources to support the mental health and wellness of students in the dorm as well as the larger LGBTQ+ Stanford community.

Weiland will also be working together with a host of other units on campus to create Gender Inclusive Stanford, a visionary and ambitious collaboration with the goal of significantly increasing a sense of inclusion, belonging and safety among transgender and gender non-binary students over the next three years. This program aims to effect change across multiple targeted areas, including information infrastructure; the built environment; teaching and learning; and health and wellness services.

On Friday, Sept. 29, the initiative is sponsoring World Sexual Health Day 2017 at Stanford. This global event is celebratory and educational. At Stanford, a free daylong program will feature panel discussions and lectures on topics ranging from the biochemistry of love to redefining relationships across cultures and faiths.

The World Association for Sexual Health was founded in 1978 and has facilitated sexual health through education, health promotion and networking. In recent years, WAS has also become involved in advocating changes in public policy to recognize sexual health and rights as key ingredients in overall health and social justice.