Seven Sapphic Co-Eds We Want to Take Back to School

Seven Sapphic Co-Eds We Want to Take Back to School

As students around the country get ready to head back to their college campuses, we here at SheWired have enjoyed reflecting on some of our formative same-sex experiences. While some of us figured out our love for women early — say, at summer camp — there's undoubtedly just as many of us who didn't get the memo until college. 

And then, of course, there's the uniquely collegiate phenomenon of the "Lesbian Until Graduation," affectionately known as a LUG. Don't lie — we've all fallen for that girl at one point… Or who knows, maybe we were that LUG. Regardless, we figured Fall was a good time to reflect on some of our favorite pop-culture collegiate lesbians, even if some of them were just LUGs. Read on to find clips and photos of our favorite sapphic co-eds — we'll call them honorary members of the Delta Gayta Sappha sorority. 

Rebecca Logan (Dilshad Vadsaria) — ABC Family's Greek


Without question, the leader of DGS has simply got to be Rebecca Logan from ABC Family's college dramadey Greek. The daughter of a wealthy but scandal-laden senator, we first met Rebecca as a snobby, privileged princess who's hell-bent on taking over the top-ranked sorority Zeta Beta Zeta at the fictional Cyprus Rhodes University, located in a suspiciously temperate Ohio town. (Seriously, did it ever snow at CRU in the show's seven seasons?) But as the series progresses, we learn more about Rebecca, played by the gorgeous Dilshad Vadsaria, and find ourselves sympathetic to her neglected past, leading to her guarded present. After a series of failed relationships with frat boys, Rebecca kisses a leggy redhead and former ZBZ sister at a bachelorette party in the second season, and then proudly proclaiming to her entire house "I'm a lesbian now."  But after one awkward date and a heart-to-heart with Greek's main gay protagonist, popular-guy Calvin, Rebecca realizes she isn't ready to register her gay card just yet. 

But re-watching that initial kiss, we can see why Rebecca was swayed. See for yourself below:

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Sophia Swanson (Michelle Ang) — MTV's Underemployed




This short-lived hour-long dramadey about the much-maligned Millennial generation sometimes bordered on being downright dreadful, but the show's saving grace was its lead character, an openly queer woman of color. As the group's aspiring author, Sophia Swanson (Michelle Ang) serves as the show's narrator, guiding viewers through the trials and tribulations she and her freshly graduated friends endure as they try to make their mark working underpaid jobs in Chicago. Sophia is smart, sensitive, and thoughtful, and throughout the first season has an impressively nuanced coming out story. When we first meet Sophia, her friends constantly tease her about being a virgin, and try to connect Sophia with a few bros willing to pop her cherry. But ultimately, it's a gorgeous older woman who spots Sophia working behind the counter of her hideous job at Donut Girl who sweeps Sophia off her feet, leading her gently into the land of lesbians. And after some internal struggle — but outspoken support from her friends — Sophia proudly claims the L-word as her identity.

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Cynthia Rose (Esther Dean) — Pitch Perfect



There are a million reasons to love Pitch Perfect, but Esther Dean's no-nonsense, beatboxing Cynthia Rose stands out as particularly aca-awesome. Cynthia's fierce presence leads her fellow Bellas to suspect her sapphic leanings early on, and despite her initial denials, Cynthia eventually comes out as a lesbian toward the end of the film, and precisely zero people are shocked by the revelation. But lez be honest, we already knew. And we still love you, too, Cynthia. Relive the "confessional" moment below: 

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Taryn (Jennifer Connelly) and Kristen (Kristy Swanson) — Higher Learning




This intense drama unflinchingly explores race, rape, responsibility and sexuality in a way that was damn near unheard of when the film hit theaters in 1995. And while the film included easily despicable characters like a white supremacist and a rapist,  it was the girl-on-girl kiss that often evoked the most visceral reaction inside the theater, according to a SheWired editor who saw the film in her hometown when it first came out. After being brutally raped by a guy she was dating, Kristen (Kristy Swanson) confides in her lesbian friend Taryn (a young and totally stunning Jennifer Connelly) that she feels safe when they're together, and like Taryn really understands her. It's clear in the scene below that what Taryn understands is the mutual attraction between the two teenagers, despite Kristen's boyfriend — who for all intents and purposes is out of sight, out of mind in the intimate exchange below.

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Willow Rosenberg (Alyson Hannigan) and Tara McClay (Amber Benson) — WB's Buffy The Vampire Slayer




The titular character in this cult classic of a series might have been a straight blonde bombshell with a serious penchant for kicking demon ass, but a lesbian storyline on Joss Whedon's vampire drama might be the show's most enduring legacy. The show's self-proclaimed most powerful witch in the world, Willow (played by Allyson Hannigan) fell hard and strong for fellow witchy woman Tara (Amber Benson). The couple's relationship blossomed, and became one of the most stable on the drama-laden series — eventually even securing an on-screen kiss or two between the women. Amber Benson, who played Tara, told SheWired last year that she and costar Hannigan fought alongside showrunner Whedon to make sure the lesbian couple was treated fairly, while gently pushing the boundaries of culturally visible lesbians. The show's supernatural basis allowed the characters to tread gently into the hearts and minds of viewers who perhaps weren't used to seeing two women very much in love with one another. 

"Like on Buffy, to be able to talk about lesbianism in a way that doesn’t offend people if they’re not interested in that … we [made] it about magic," explained Benson in SheWired's exclusive interview. "They’re magic together. And if you want to say yeah, they’re lesbians and they’re falling in love and that’s what magic is all about, then great. And if you can’t handle that then you just enjoy the show as what it is: magic. You can cater it a lot to people that way. And you can open their eyes. Because that’s what it’s all about. I love the show and I love the magic but I think those girls are falling in love and I’m kind of okay with it and maybe I wasn’t before. I think it’s really important."

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Paige Michalchuk (Lauren Collins) — The N's Degrassi: The Next Generation



As one of the original cast members of the revival of Canadian teen drama Degrassi, Paige was the series' original "mean girl," captain of the Spirit Squad and resident peer pressurer. When first we meet Paige, she's head-over-heels for her boyfriend Spinner, complete with nauseating nicknames for one another like "Honey Bee." Throughout the course of the series, Paige softens and becomes a more nuanced character, standing up for her gay brother, and even bringing to trial the college boy who raped her when she was 15. When Paige befriends Alex Nuñez, the tough girl from the wrong side of the tracks, the two emotional powerhouses fall for one another. In true lesbian fashion, the pair have a rocky, on-again, off-again relationship that stretches into Paige's year-long stint at Banting University, thereby formally qualifying her for inclusion on this list of collegiate lesbians. As far as the show goes, though, Alex is the only girl Paige dates, so we're going to mark her in the bisexual character category, like Kristy Swanson's Kristen in Higher Learning.

Enjoy this fan-created video of the tour de force that was Palex: 


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Tea (Sofia Black D'Elia) — MTV's Skins




The short-lived American installation of the iconic British drama frankly depicting teenage sexuality and drug use, Skins caught controversy at every turn. While the drug use was a sticking point for some, the really incendiary component was the show's "sex-crazed lesbian cheerleader," a college student who refused to be swayed by the bevy of straight boys pursuing her, instead setting her sites on the sultry Cadie Campbell, played by Britne Oldford. Since the series was axed after just 10 episodes, enjoy this fan video highlighting some of Tea and Cadie's best moments. 

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