Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity
Dear Duke parents and families,
Periodically, I like to acknowledge various parts of our diverse community. Today, in advance of some key upcoming commemorations, I want to share some thoughts about our LGBTQ community.
Collaboration & Change for a Common Good
A Reflection on Collaboration in Campus Life
India Pierce and Sean Novak
During last week’s Greek Ally Week, Blue Devils United hosted a student panel about being both Greek and LGBTQ on Duke’s campus. The next day’s Chronicle article incorrectly identified one of the African-American panelists as “queer,” which made her uncomfortable. “What is ‘queer’ supposed to mean?” she asked me later. The term is vague, politicized, and simultaneously lacking a concrete meaning while burdened with decades of history.
You may ask, “Lavender graduation…why the need for a special ceremony?” I’m glad you asked. A lot of seniors at Duke have been positively affected by their existence at Duke as a LGBTQ student and/or as an ally. Some students have also been very negatively affected and found the Center to be a safe haven at some point in their journey… a place to get support, a place to be greeted by a smiling face, a place to get a hug, a place to crash on the couch, a place to have fun and forget your troubles even if just for an hour. But most of all Lavender graduation is about celebrating who you
Over Spring Break, I traveled to Costa Rica with Duke Chapel. I carried preconceived notions of the country, most notably that its predominately Catholic population would be homophobic and unwelcoming.
Costa Rica (literally “Rich Coast”) has a population of 4.5 million people, and is located snugly between Nicaragua and Panama. The average family makes $10,200 dollars a year. Seventy percent of Costa Ricans identify as Roman Catholic, fourteen percent identify as Protestant, and two percent identify as Buddhist. And same-sex civil unions are legal.
As a freshman I would rarely ever stop by the center. I believed that it didn't have much to offer me aside from a couch to power nap in between to classes on. However, as one of my good friends kept dragging me along to the LGBT Center's events (as it was then called), I began to realize that there was much I could gain from the Center. And so, I've compiled a short sweet list of reasons to come visit the CSGD (and me when I'm working).
Following the 30 under 30 list theme, Iâd like to make a list of my own. A list of 3 up-and-coming LGBTQ black people who I expect will do and continue to do great things. (3 only because 30 is a little too ambitious for me.)
The Center for Sexual and Gender Diveristy is excited to begin the hiring process for our Student Programming Assistants! For a link to the application, see the bottom of this page.
Student Programming Job Description