GEM SHEPS: Queerly Beloved

_DSC4416We are gathered here today to discuss the resources we have access to as LGBTQ+ students. The GLBT Student Services (GLBTSS) office is one of the major LGBTQ+ friendly resource centers on campus. It can be found in the Tivoli, and it provides information to all three Auraria institutions.

The GLBTSS not only provides support to queer students on campus by helping them explore their identities and providing safe sex practices—they also advocate for students who have been discriminated against because of their identity. They hold events on campus to bring awareness to LGBTQ+ issues and even have a library of queer resources for student use. In wake of this summer’s events at Pulse in Orlando, the GLBTSS can provide queer students with grief management resources.

The Auraria Genders and Sexualities Alliance (GSA) is a student run organization that meets every Tuesday at 5 p.m. in the Tivoli. Students and staff gather to discuss queer issues, media, news, and events. They also hold events to raise awareness and help students succeed in academics.

We deserve a safe space on campus

The Phoenix Center at Auraria provides services specifically related to “Interpersonal Violence.” They aim to implement ‘response and education’ with regards to sex and relationship violence, and will help anyone of any gender, sexuality, or race.

Additionally, rooms throughout the Tivoli may proudly display a pride flag in their windows, letting you know you’re welcome here, bar none.

Feeling secure in world where our lives are less can be difficult, and scary—I know it is for me. That’s why these resources are put in place: we deserve a safe space on campus.

We also deserve to have friends who understand us. It can be uncomfortable talking to cis straight friends about your confusion surrounding your gender or sexuality, but a kind of security is immediately found when speaking to someone in the same boat as you. These organizations can help you find a niche where you fit perfectly, and I will always encourage queer students to utilize them.

Gem Sheps
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