All-Girls Catholic College Just Announced It Will Now Admit Men Who Identify as Trans Women

AP Photo/Michael Casey

In the latest example of biological men being allowed into women’s spaces, an all-girls Catholic college has announced it will begin considering trans applicants next school year.

A spokesperson for Saint Mary’s College confirmed earlier this week that the change to the admissions is in response to the institution’s recently updated non-discrimination policy.

On Thursday’s show, Megyn was joined by Britt Mayer, founder of Rooted Wings, to discuss Saint Mary’s decision and why single-sex spaces need to be protected.

New Admissions Policies

Founded in 1844 by the Sisters of the Holy Cross, Saint Mary’s College is a private liberal arts school in Notre Dame, Indiana. The Roman Catholic institution was meant to be a female-only alternative to the nearby University of Notre Dame, which, at the time, only admitted men. Today, Notre Dame is co-ed, but Saint Mary’s has remained a women’s college.

Earlier this month, Saint Mary’s College President Kate Conboy sent a letter to students informing them that the school will consider transgender women for admission into its undergraduate programs beginning in fall 2024. She wrote that the new policy ensures Saint Mary’s is “an inclusive community leader.”

On Tuesday, college spokesperson Lisa Knox confirmed the change. The decision came after the college’s board of trustees amended its non-discrimination policy in June. The policy maintains that Saint Mary’s College is “a Catholic women’s college” with a mission to “empower women, through education, at all stages in life,” but it now “considers admission for undergraduate applicants whose sex is female or who consistently live and identify as women.” 

According to the nonprofit Campus Pride, Saint Mary’s is one of less than than 40 active women’s colleges in the country. With its policy change, it becomes the twenty-third all-girls campus to allow trans students.

The Backlash

The decision drew backlash from Bishop Kevin Rhoades of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend. “The desire of Saint Mary’s College to show hospitality to people who identify as transgender is not the problem,” he wrote in a statement. “The problem is a Catholic woman’s college embracing a definition of woman that is not Catholic.”

There has been backlash from the student body as well. “Some of the criticisms from some of the people who are matriculated there is that it’s no longer a women’s institution; this is fraud; [they] should be entitled to a refund for luring us into a Catholic women’s institution from a place that has now abandoned its faith and the woman,” Megyn explained. “These women are now going to have to share bathrooms and locker rooms with men. They chose to go to a women’s university for a reason.”

While the school claims it is upholding its mission by being “inclusive,” Mayer said it’s just the opposite. “Your school was established intentionally to protect women… it was set up to be an all-women’s college for further learning,” she noted. “It’s just such a bad take… Don’t call it an all women’s college anymore… just say we’re just gonna do it all.”

Ultimately, Megyn believes it’s a slap in the face to women who chose a single-sex environment for a reason. “A lot of women do choose all-women institutions because they’ve had issues in their past and they just want to be with only women,” she concluded. “And they’re entitled to do that – just as men are entitled to go to all-male institutions – and then not have a bait-and-switch of the kind that we’re seeing here.”

You can check out Megyn’s full interview with Mayer by tuning in to episode 677 on YouTube, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you like to listen. And don’t forget that you can catch The Megyn Kelly Show live on SiriusXM’s Triumph (channel 111) weekdays from 12pm to 2pm ET.