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Anti-gay Ga. counseling student’s lawsuit dismissed

Jennifer Keeton, a former graduate counseling student who sued Augusta State University for expelling her because her beliefs went against ethical guidelines for being a school counselor, had her lawsuit dismissed on all counts in federal court.

The ruling, by U.S. District Court Judge J. Randal Hall on June 22, said Keeton had no claim to argue that the university was biased against because of her religious beliefs including homosexuality is immoral. As a graduate student in counseling who hoped to be a counselor in secondary schools, Keeton would have to follow the ethical guidelines of being a counselor that included not allowing personal beliefs interfere with judgment.

Hall's ruling upholds the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling on a lower court case that also ruled Keeton's lawsuit was unfounded.

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Facing protests over anti-gay policy, Shorter Univ. cancels classes after bomb threat

Shorter University

Two weeks after Shorter University revealed its new Personal Lifestyle Statement for employees, gay staff fear witchhunts, local citizens are planning petitions and protests, and some alumni worry that their degrees will appear less valuable in the eyes of employers.

The campus in Rome, Ga., has canceled classes for Thursday and Friday after a bomb threat this morning, according to the Rome News-Tribune. The threat, which has since been cleared, came as about a dozen people gathered to protest Shorter’s new policy.

Another protest is planned for 10 a.m. Friday on the sidewalk of Shorter Avenue, in front of Shorter University, Rome resident Gary D. Harrell told GA Voice. It is timed to coincide with the inauguration of Shorter President Don Dowless.

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Emory University shines in LGBT Friendly Campus Climate Index

Emory University shines in new LGBT campus indexAtlanta's Emory University has received a 5-star rating in the latest LGBT Friendly Campus Climate Index, according to a media release issued by the university earlier today.

From Emory's Office of LGBT Life: “True to the institution’s commitment to diversity in all its forms, Emory University established a number of policies and procedures that create more access for students of all sexual and gender identities. To better communicate this commitment, President James Wagner was featured in an It Gets Better Project video last spring with a message of strength and hope on behalf of the entire university.”

Emory is also home to some 10 LGBT student and faculty organizations and regularly hosts events specific to the LGBT community.