Student Spotlight (Spring 2014)

The Q Center wishes farewell and a fabulous future to our graduating staff members! James, Ginger, and Lor filled us in on their favorite UW memory, the Q Center work they are most proud of, and what they look forward to after graduation.

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James, Ginger, & Lor

James (they/them/their pronouns)

Degree: BA in Anthropology

Post-graduation plans: I’m really looking forward to not having to read or write anything I don’t want to read or write anymore… Also, getting to spend more time with people! 

Proud Q Center work: So far, I am really happy about the different collaborations that have been happening out of the Q Center, especially with Qolors 2014, Queer API Narratives and just how much the presence of Queer People of Color has grown in different ways around campus. 

Favorite UW memory: My favorite UW memory has been meeting everyone that I have through the Queer People of Color Alliance (QPOCA) and being able to go to Queer Students of Color Conference (QSOCC) with them last year and again this year!

 

 

Ginger Colamussi (she/her/hers pronouns)

Degree: Master’s of Social Work (MSW)

Post-graduation plans: After graduation, I am looking forward to joining a nonprofit youth development organization that empowers young people to make healthy decisions, achieve their goals, and create positive change in their communities and in the world. In my personal time, I am also looking forward to reading for pleasure, hiking in the Olympic and Cascade Mountains, and spending more time with my amazing partner, Kelly, and my sweet dog, Boots.

Proud Q Center work: I have been the Queer Mentoring Program Coordinator for two years during my MSW program. I am most proud of growing the number of participants in this program to nearly 100 people! It’s been an incredibly exciting and humbling opportunity to meet so many motivated and engaged queer students, staff, faculty, and alumni at UW!

Favorite UW memory: My favorite UW memory is having the opportunity to see Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor speak on campus. What a warm, brilliant, and inspiring woman! <<Swoon>>

 

 

Lor (masculine/them/they pronouns)

Degree: Master’s of Social Work (MSW)

Post-graduation plans: Aside from scoring a job that fits with my professional focus of working with LGBTQ+ youth and families, I’m looking forward to reading something totally not related to school work and reconnecting with friends who I have not been able to spend much quality time with these past two years.

Proud Q Center work: The support work with various students and developing the grad school class for next spring.

Favorite UW memory: Hum…the many discussions over various libations in Shultzy’s with various cohort members and the laughter from a few folks in the Q Center over this year.

 


9th Annual Qolors Reception with Mia McKenzie

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Q Center Staff with Mia McKenzie

On April 9, the Q Center and the Kelly Ethnic Cultural Center collaborated to host the annual Qolors Reception, celebrating and centering the experiences of queer and trans* people of color. Now in its ninth year, the reception drew a record crowd of 135 guests. The reception featured spoken word performances from two fierce Seattle youth, a community art piece, and a video project documenting the rich history of Qolors and its importance to the campus community. Mia McKenzie (founder and chief editor of the blog, Black Girl Dangerous) offered a candid keynote speech illuminating the theme, “We are enough. Reclaiming our power.”

View Mia McKenzie’s keynote speech.


Lavender Graduation 2014: Be Your Own Queen

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Every year, the Q Center and the ASUW Queer Student Commission host Lavender Graduation as a time for the UW queer, trans*, two-spirit, same-gender-loving, and allied communities to come together and celebrate our multiple identities, our accomplishments, and sheer AWESOMENESS. This year’s ceremony will take place on Tuesday, June 10, from 6 – 8:30 p.m. in the UW Tower Mezzanine Lounge. We are excited to announce that local activist and Drag Empress, Aleksa Manila, will offer words for the graduates in celebration of our theme, “2014: Be Your Own Queen!” Read more about our royally fierce keynote speaker.

 

Participation in the Lavender Graduation ceremony is open to undergraduate and graduate/professional students who are eligible for graduation in the 2013-2014 (including fall 2014) academic year. Attendance is open to all other students, alumni and friends. Guests do not have to be graduating students or of a certain sexual or gender identity/orientation/expression to attend this year-end celebration. Everyone is welcome. If you would like more information about the ceremony or want to volunteer, please contact Jaimée Marsh at jaimeem@uw.edu or (206) 897-1430. To participate in the ceremony, graduates must register by June 4. We look forward to celebrating with you!


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Q Center Pride Points

We are proud to highlight a few of the Q Center’s accomplishments for the 2013-2014 academic year:

  • Participation in our Queer Mentoring Program more than doubled in the last year.  We’re now serving 94 participants!
  • We provided Safe Zone training to 530 people and counting…
  • Our student-run blog, Dear Queer, is wildly popular! Check out the four new blog posts from spring quarter.
  • We have over 1,600 Facebook followers! Like our Facebook page and/or join the Q Center’s Facebook group for daily updates from the Q.
  • We added 45 new books to our lending library.
  • We initiated several new programs, including three new support groups (Lavender Circle, Global Q, Trans*/GenderQueer), weekly walk-in advising hours, a healthy relationship workshop, a healthy sexuality series, and weekly social programming.
  • We collaborated with 29 different campus partners and community organizations on programming!  For instance, our collaboration with the Hub, Facilities, the Office of Planning and Budgeting, and the Office of Title IX & ADA Compliance has led to the creation of more gender neutral restrooms in the core of campus!

welcome to the q photoDid you know?

Did you know that the Q Center remains open during the summer? Our summer hours are: Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., and by appointment after hours.

 

 


Internship position: Rainbow Health Fair Coordinator

The Rainbow Health Fair offers traditional and holistic health services and education from culturally competent providers to lesbian, bisexual, and queer women and genderqueer and transgender people, especially those with limited access to care.  The Rainbow Health Fair Coordinator will support all pieces of preparation and implementation for the YWCA’s annual Rainbow Health Fair, which has been serving the LBTQ community since 1995.  The fair will take place on Saturday, June 28th, 2014, and the planning process, spearheaded by the Rainbow Health Fair Committee, begins in January.

At the YWCA of Seattle-King-Snohomish, our mission is to empower women, eliminate racism, and advance the quality of life for all women and their families. Within this broader framework, our Women’s Health Outreach (WHO) program provides peer outreach, education, and health services to a diverse community of women with limited incomes, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. By helping to plan and execute an accessible, effective Rainbow Health Fair, the Coordinator will support the Women’s Health Outreach Program in fulfilling its goal to bring health care resources to these underserved communities.

Once a month, and more frequently towards the Health Fair date, 1.5 to 2 hour planning meetings are held Tuesdays between 6.30 and 8.00pm. The Planning Committee consists of a group of enthusiastic volunteers and the Program Manager of the Women’s Health Outreach (WHO).

Overarching Rainbow Health Fair Coordinator responsibilities will include:

  • · Promote the fair in the Seattle LBTQ community through outreach and marketing
  • · Maintain and update the Rainbow Health Fair blog to create buzz and educate attendees
  • · Assist in coordinating meetings for the Rainbow Health Fair Committee, which consists of YWCA staff, volunteers, and community leaders
  • · Take notes and offer logistical support at committee meetings
  • · Recruit volunteers for the day of the fair
  • · Support event implementation on the day of the fair, and celebrate with the YWCA team!

 

The Coordinator will have the opportunity to collaborate with the YWCA’s Women’s Health Outreach staff, a diverse group of dedicated women who bring years of experience in community health and social work to the table. The WHO office environment is extremely warm and welcoming, and the Coordinator will benefit from the support, wisdom, and humor of our staff. Much of the planning and preparation for the Rainbow Health Fair will be done on-site at the YWCA, and there will be an area set aside for the Coordinator and equipped with the necessary resources. A few pieces of the project can also be completed remotely, which will offer the Coordinator some flexibility.

This position offers many professional and personal growth opportunities, including chances to learn the inner workings of a large social service organization, receive mentoring from seasoned health and social work professionals, and develop community organizing and project management skills. The Coordinator will also be able to enhance their understanding of the barriers our YWCA clients face, and carry this with them into their social work careers.  The ideal student is well-organized, enjoys engaging with community members, writes and communicates well, and is able to work independently. The Coordinator must possess a passion for health care access and/or health education and an understanding of social justice issues and barriers to health care, preferably with a lens specific to the LBTQ community.

If you are interested, please contact Ingrid Berkhout at iberkhout@ywcaworks.org or 206-461-4493.


Q Ink! (Winter Quarter)

Q Ink is a creative writing group run by the Q Center library. We will help peer edit and give comments and critiques to your stories. It will be a free writing space where you can let your creativity flow onto a page or a laptop. It will be a place where writers don’t have to feel awkward or afraid of sharing queer oriented stories. Each week will have a theme for our writing. Come on by and we will help one another learn, gain ideas, and most importantly WRITE!

Meeting dates for winter quarter: 2/7, 2/14, 2/21, 2/28, 3/7, 3/14

From: 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM in the Q Center (HUB 315)

The theme for 2/7 is “Fun and Games!” and the theme for 2/14 is “Love and Lust”

More themes will be revealed later!


NEW Support Group: Lavender Circle

The Lavender Circle is an open, affirming place to explore our identities and experiences, and have questions answered amongst a supportive group of peers.

Join us for discussions framed around gender identity, gender expression, sexual identity development, and more.  This group is not framed around ally development.

 

When: Wednesdays, 4:30 – 5:30 PM*
Where: Q Center (HUB 315)

 

*The Q Center will be closed to the public during this group.  Participants should arrive within 10 minutes of the start time.

 


NEW Trans* & Gender Queer Support Group

Looking for camaraderie and support around gender identity and/or expression? Look no further! Ready, get set, GENDER! Every Tuesday from 12:30-1:30 p.m. in the Q Center you too can meet with others who wish to explore the continuum of gender identity and expression through discussion, support of one another, and connection. This support group is facilitated by two master of social work students interning at the Q Center. Lor and Liz bring to the group years of experience in facilitation, community organizing, and expertise in gender and sexuality.

 

 

When: Tuesdays 12:30-1:30 p.m.—Starting January 21, 2014

Where: Q Center (HUB 315)

What: Trans* & Gender Queer Support Group

Why: Because we like you!

 


Sara Farizan’s “If You Could Be Mine (ALGONQUIN)” Reading & Book Signing

If You Could Be Mine (ALGONQUIN) bookA seventeen-year-old girl in Iran longs to carry on her relationship with her best friend Nasrin in public, but their country is a dangerous place for two women in love. When Nasrin’s parents announce they have an arranged marriage set for their daughter, Nasrin believes that she and Sahar can carry on in private with the comforts provided by her soon-to-be husband. But Sahar has a different plan: sexual reassignment surgery so that she and Nasrin can legally be together. Is it worth changing who she is, though, to be with the one she loves?

Time: Monday, October 21, 7:00PM
Location: U District Store

Sara Farizan is an MFA graduate of Lesley University and holds a BA in film and media studies from American University. Sara has been a Hollywood intern, a waitress, a comic book/record store employee, an art magazine blogger, a marketing temp, and an after-school teacher, but above all else she has always been a writer. Sara lives near Boston, has a cool sister, loves Kurosawa films, eighties R&B, and graphic novels, and thinks all kids are awesome.

PRE-ORDER AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY ($16.95)

Please Note: Autographed copies of books are only available after the event.