LGBTea Gives Students a chance to Relax

On Sept. 6, the Gender and Sexuality Student Services hosted the first LGBTea of the year.  LGBTea is an event sponsored by the Diversity Center on campus that aims to give students a place to relax and unwind at the end of the week.  Since it is hosted on Thursdays, most students will have finished majority of their classes for the week.  Students gathered in one of the rooms in the GSSS Student Lounge in the Diversity Center with snacks and refreshments while music played, and they talk about whatever they feel like talking about.  As the name suggests, there was also tea available.  Contrary to the name, however, heterosexual and cis-gender allies can and are encouraged to participate as well.  This is available for free to all students on campus, regardless of sexuality or gender identification.

   The office of Gender and Sexuality Student Services serves to “present educational, cultural and social opportunities for all students to challenge intolerance and promote affirmation in an effort to create a more inclusive and affirming campus climate for sexual and gender minorities.”  This is achieved through having many events that focus on empowering the LGBTQIA+ community on campus.  These events include National Coming Out Day on October 11, the Day of Silence in April, and many events that are shared with Women’s History Month and Black History Month. There are many non-public events as well, including many different support and discussion groups, SHADES and Fluidity. The most visible program put on by the GSSS office is Queertober, which is an entire month dedicated to empowering the LGBTQIA+ community on campus. 

   LGBTea is just one small way that the GSSS office works to build connections between the LGBTQIA+ community and the rest of the campus.  The office strives to welcome people of all genders and all sexualities including heterosexual and cis-gender allies to bind the campus together, and in that goal, the office of Gender and Sexuality Student Services succeeds quite well.