As an LGBTQIA+ student preparing to enter the workforce, you may encounter some unique challenges on your career journey related to career planning, professional development, your sexual orientation, or gender identity. At the Temple University Career Center, most staff members are Safe Zone certified and we are prepared to offer you support throughout this process!

To be "Out" or Not "Out"?

Searching for a job and starting a career can be stressful. Many LGBTQIA+ people have additional concerns related to their gender identity, presentation, and sexual orientation and may be unsure if they should be "out" at work or when to "come out" at work. Determining your own comfort levels and using your best judgment throughout the job search process is key. There is no right or wrong answer, and you should do what feels right for you. What feels right may also change throughout your life.

Choose a statement below to help decide how to approach your job search.

Do Your Research

State laws and policies that affect the LGBTQIA+ community vary. Check out the laws and policies where you are seeking employment: State Maps of Laws & Policies  

Employment Law in Pennsylvania: 

  • As of 2022, Pennsylvania employment law DOES NOT prohibit employment discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. 

Company Culture

Review the company website and speak with current employees at the organization. Pay attention to the language used on their website. Some questions to keep in mind as you research include: 

  • What types of training do they provide that are sensitive to LGBTQIA+ relations? 

  • Do they offer employee resource groups for LGBTQIA+ persons, either informal or formal? 

  • Are there gender-neutral facilities?

  • What are the benefits for partners and spouses? 

Presenting Yourself on a Resume

Once you have determined your comfort level with your career path as an LGBTQIA+ person, it is important to consider how you will present yourself. 

Resumes come indifferent formats and vary based on industry. 

Tailor your resume to the position and company for which you are applying while being mindful of that company’s culture and values.

Presenting Yourself in an Interview

Ideally, you will be familiar with the company’s culture by the time of your interview.  Your level of comfort in your interview could depend on whether you chose to be “out” on your resume. The interview is an opportunity to learn more about the organization as well as “test the waters” in relation to sexual orientation and gender identity in the workplace.

If you have a question about how to articulate your LGBTQIA+ experience in your job search and at work, we can help you!  Schedule an appointment