Vibrant decorations, music and laughter dominated the second floor of Boyden Hall during the “You Have a Home at BSU” reception.
The event was held to celebrate the launch of the university’s first-ever LGBTQ+ alumni group.
“I think this is one of many good first steps I’ve seen in the past few years,” said Peter Wood, ’18. “This creates more spaces for alumni, to remind them that connections and spaces to network do exist.”
Wood came to the event to celebrate the extended supports being put in place to support members of the LGBTQ+ community and their allies on campus and beyond.
As an alumnus, Cam Hall, ’17, plans on volunteering to help get the newly established group up and running.
“I definitely will be part of it. It feels good to be able to come back to BSU and have a socially inclusive place to gather,” Hall said.
The university is currently ranked 36th in the nation as a best college for LGBTQ students, a statistic that President Frederick W. Clark Jr. shed light on during the reception.
“Let’s applaud 36 for just a minute, then go after 35, 34… I really want to be number one,” Clark said.
Dr. Jean MacCormack, board of trustees vice chairwoman, announced she is planning to donate $50,000 to the new Achieving the Dream Fund.
“This is something I believe will have a lasting effect,” Dr. MacCormack said of the new fund; she encouraged others to give if they are able.
Money raised will create pilot retention programs to help struggling students find success and close achievement gaps, said Dr. Sabrina Gentlewarrior, vice president of Student Success and Diversity.
“BSU is taking the right steps and we invite everyone to be part of the conversation,” said Dr. Luis F. Paredes, director of Institutional Diversity. (Photos by Heather Harris Michonski, University News & Video)