Since its opening in October 2019, the Gender and Sexuality Student Resource Center has offered classes and events to keep students connected and cultivate a sense of community.
Peter Moosman, the center’s coordinator, said that all students are welcome and encouraged to visit the center located on the South City Campus in room 1-140.
“One of my favorite things about being involved with the center is seeing people find community and people who are like them, as well as find a space where they are comfortable, safe and have a place where they can be themselves and celebrate that,” Moosman said.
During this unprecedented time, the GSSRC has organized weekly virtual events, including Zumba classes and Hit the G.A.S. (Gender And Sexuality), a virtual gender and sexuality discussion group focused on themes surrounding pop culture and society.
The GSSRC has been following COVID-19 guidelines since the soft opening this summer, according to Leka Heimuli, a secretary at the center.
“Since it is a soft opening, there is a limited number of people who can be in the center,” Heimuli said. “But we are here, and we’re open.”
There is a sharing counter inside of the center where students can get access to pens, stickers, feminine hygiene products and condoms. Students can also check out books at the gender and sexuality library.
Heimuli notes the center also offers a printer where students and staff can print or copy up to 10 pages for free.
Moosman and Heimuli offer a few suggestions for students interested in getting involved.
“Anyone is welcome to come in and volunteer. They can hang out and work on projects or other activities which are happening in the center,” Moosman said.
In addition to getting involved with the student clubs, Heimuli said, “Directly getting involved with us here through becoming a mentor through our peer mentor program is a great start.”
Heimuli added that getting involved be as simple as “coming by our center and just visiting.”
A celebration for National Coming Out Day and the center’s one-year anniversary are some of the events scheduled during LGBTQ+ History Month in October. Heimuli says the GSSRC has been considering COVID-19 when planning these events.
“We will probably have small, intimate events leading up to a bigger event,” Heimuli said.
Links to both classes, held virtually on Webex, can be found on the center’s website. Zumba is held every Thursday at noon and “Hit the G.A.S.” Fridays from noon to 1 p.m.
Contact the Gender and Sexuality Resource Center for more information.
An earlier version of this story originally appeared in the 2020 back to school issue.