The popular joke here is that Mills College is "twenty-five percent lesbian, fifty percent bi, and twenty-five percent freshwomen." Most students seem to find that when they tell people they're going to Mills, they get reactions like "Oh, you must be a lesbian," or "Watch out, all those girls are gonna be hitting on you!" The Mills College Lesbian Avengers decided that it was time to find out what the real story was. This fall, we put out a survey, distributing it in every dorm, every lounge, and even the graduate dorms. It asked whether you were a grad or undergrad student, what your gender identity was, what your sexual orientation was, and whether you were interested in a Queer Studies program at Mills, or at least more queer-relevant classes. We know it seems like a very personal thing to be surveying. Why do people want to know so much about your sexuality anyway? What does it matter how many people live this way or that way at Mills? Well, part of it is just plain old curiosity. Maybe it wouldn't be so interesting if we just counted gay and straight, but don't you want to know how many omnisexual students there are at Mills, especially if you are one? It also helps us discover interesting questions that need to be addressed - like, are we really at an all-WOMEN college? And if it turns out we're not, do we want to change the population from the way it is? If nothing else, the more our administration knows about its student body, the better they can decide what classes to bring to Mills and what to tell prospective students about their world. This is certainly reflected in the responses to our suggestion of a Queer Studies program. One student commented, "Wow, for a survey that tries to put you in boxes, you certainly have a lot of them to choose from. Ambitious survey - good luck!" We did have pretty good luck: the survey got 141 responses in our school of about 745 undergrads. That's almost a fifth of the school answering a random survey that wasn't even placed directly in OM or Olney mailboxes; it far exceeded our cynical predictions. Apparently Mills students aren't as apathetic as the administration tries to convince us we are! At its most basic, the survey revealed that 44% of respondents were straight, 54.7% were queer, and 2.2% didn't respond. ("Queer" included people calling themselves bi, lesbian, dyke, queer, asexual, omnisexual, and gay-identified bi; you can get more specific numbers for the whole survey at We didn't have a statistician on hand, but we think this sample is large enough to be statistically significant, particularly since we got a roughly equal number of responses from all dorms. You can apply these statistics to the Mills campus at your own discretion. The gender results were wild. We offered choices of male, female, androgyne, none, or transgendered. The choices were confusing to many students; "androgyne" is someone who considers themselves to belong to or have attributes of both genders, whereas "none" would just be someone who didn't identify with any gender at all. Both these last options might be considered to be part of the transgendered community, but for the purpose of the survey we mostly put transsexual options under "transgendered," so people who identified themselves as actively changing their gender in some way could check there. We assumed that any students who fit into those categories would know what they meant, but later realized that having these unfamiliar terms turned many students off to the survey. Next time, we'll do better. As with sexuality, we got a lot of write-in answers from people who know themselves better than we do. Some students identified their gender as "tomboy," and some wrote "both" or "asexual." The final results were: 82.7% of respondents identified as female, and 12.3% didn't. Of those who didn't, we had students who identified as both (bi-gendered), female-to-male, tomboys, asexual, female-to-androgynes, and just plan transgendered. And this is a women's college! One of my favorite comments came from a straight freshwoman who commented, "I think that unless this survey is being done to find out the % of the minority (strait people) it's pointless!!" and added that as far as queer studies were concerned, "Don't care - I could care less!!!!!" Well, no, apparently you couldn't! At the other end of the spectrum came a queer tomboy who remarked, "It is really odd that [we're] at a school with such a high population of Queer students and we don't have any classes about us!! I was looking forward to Sociology of Gender Roles, but even that was canceled. What's up w/the admin denying the composition (and representation) of the student body? Come on, Mills, get with it! The way we're going, Christian Bible schools will have Queer studies before Mills." One lesbian went even farther: "Yes!!!!! Lesbian lit! Lesbian art history! Great lesbians in war! Crossdressing through the ages! yah! yah! yah!" The statistics themselves show the school mostly on the side of the Great Lesbians in War. 53.2% of our respondents thought we should have Queer Studies, while another 13% thought we should have more queer classes, but not a major. 33% thought we shouldn't have Queer Studies. For those who are interested, the QS issue didn't break down along lines of sexual orientation: supporters of a major were comprised of 36% straight and 64% queer women; supporters of queer classes alone were comprised of 38% straight women, 58% queer women, and 5% "none of the above;" one queer woman was unsure; and those against having a Queer Studies major at Mills were 66% straight, 32% queer, and 2% "none of the above."