PRIDE!Kent meeting outlines year’s goals

Mike Zelling

Nearly 70 people filled the Governance Chambers of the Student Center last night to mark the first meeting of PRIDE!Kent.

Aside from addressing the group’s upcoming events for the semester, board members opened the floor to allies of the organization.

“We’re trying to reach out to the community and raise knowledge and awareness,” said Michelle Lang, PRIDE!Kent allies chair. “It’s a welcoming group for any kind of religion, race or sex.”

Representatives from the Feminist Union, College Democrats and Soulforce were among some of the groups present to show their support for PRIDE!Kent.

The seven member board outlined its continued use of Safe Zone, a program coordinated with residence halls that gives lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students safe places to go for information on campus.

Amanda Boyd, PRIDE!Kent’s president, said she has also started work on a transgender resident hall program that would work to make it easier for transgender students to live in the residence halls.

“I’ve been working a lot with residence services,” Boyd said, “to better prepare students who are transgendered.”

Boyd and Lang both said they were going to keep working with the speaker’s bureau on holding open forums in the residence halls. She also said the group plans on bringing a strong focus back to volunteer work, which she said they have already started with Habitat for Humanity.

The board then allowed members to speak on issues they wanted to see addressed this year. Members suggested topics ranging from forming a panel on the power of language to planning an educational transgender week.

“We had a really strong year last year and we’re trying to keep that going,” Boyd said.

Contact ethnic affairs reporter Mike Zelling at [email protected].