Q Center, summer 2022
On April 30, 48 LGBTQ+ identifying undergraduate and graduate students were formally recognized and celebrated in the Q Center’s sixth annual Lavender Graduation Ceremony. Graduating students received a rainbow-themed cord to wear at their Commencement ceremony and signed a frame to be displayed in the Q Center.
The formal ceremony included welcome remarks from Karen Jones, vice president for the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and President Harvey Stenger. The keynote address was provided by Aviva Friedman ’14 who serves the local community as a sexual health educator with Family Planning of South-Central New York and as a Binghamton City Council member.
As part of the Lavender Celebration, the Q Center presented five awards to deserving students and staff who positively impacted the LGBTQ+ campus community through advocacy, activism and community service.
The following awards were presented:
- OUTstanding Graduating Student Award - Kayci Rudge ’22
- “Sunshine” Award - Gabriel Hauber ’22
- Activism Award - Wren Evans
- Community Service Award - Soledad Arianna Pérez ’22
- Faculty/Staff Advocacy in Action Award - Derek Jorden
Q Center staff and numerous students contributed to the creation of a queer graffiti wall in the center throughout the month of May. The wall of campus community art will serve as an enduring physical representation of the collective creativity, expression, and healing of the queer and transgender campus community.
In April, the Q Center collaborated with the campus Food Co-Op for the final Gender Bender Friday event. The center welcomed over 40 community members to participate in a clothing swap, contribute to the Gender Bender Clothing Closet and learn more about sustainable fashion practices.
Q Center Assistant Director Nick Martin collaborated with the External Scholarship and Undergraduate Research Center team for this year’s Research Days. Additionally, Martin served on campus search committees for the assistant director of the McNair Scholars program and the Affirmative Action coordinator for DEI.
Campus training initiatives
Q Center Coordinator Nic Francisco partnered with Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) staff to host an Active Ally Foundations workshop in the EOP Tutorial Center for students and staff who work directly with the program. Francisco facilitated additional workshop and discussion opportunities for various groups including the University Counseling Center (UCC), TRiO Mentors, the Critical Conscious Conversations working group, and the Romance Languages Department faculty. In total, these developmental workshops were attended by more than 50 students, faculty and staff.