The Queer and Transgender Resource Center lacks representation and participation for events, though professors and students on campus are helping raise awareness for the LGBTQ+ community.
According to Bailey Stumreiter, lead student assistant of the Queer and Transgender Resource Center, the center is not being recognized enough and is sometimes overshadowed by the bigger organizations such as ASI.
“Sometimes the campus [strategic communication office] is not willing to promote our events, but they’ll promote other centers’ events,” says Stumreiter.
The Queer and Transgender Resource Center is one of the many centers on campus that provides resources to students, such as computers, a kitchen, snacks, a study room, and many more necessities.
With the center being underrepresented, a lot of students are missing the opportunities to get more involved in the community and LGBTQ+ students, faculty, and staff are being kept away from learning about what these events have to offer.
CSUSB’s facilities management custodian Stacy Ramirez says the Queer and Transgender Resource Center “gets people who don’t understand, like a gay person’s friend for example, get more involved where they can just be like ‘hey come with me & hear what they got to say,’ when going to events.”
The Queer and Transgender Resource Center has been a beneficial place for incoming LGBTQ+ students to go to when in need of assistance or advice.
Bryan Avila, a third-year CSUSB student who is proudly part of the LGBTQ+ community on campus, states, “in my freshman year, when I needed advice and didn’t know what to do and needed a second opinion, I went to the center and they were comfortable to talk to.”
College is a huge transition in students’ lives, and the Queer and Transgender Resource Center helps students feel comfortable being themselves.
Dr. Annika Anderson explains that because “a lot of times people do not get the chance to fully explore their sexuality until they move away from their families. College is one of those first opportunities where people who have been living with their families their whole lives are really able to express themselves a little bit better… it helps to have role models on campus that are successful and who are in the LGBTQ+ community.”
Students may be missing out on having a place on campus that feels like home to them because they are unaware the center even exists, so getting the right representation is key for the Queer and Transgender Resource Center.
Active LGBTQ+ students, such as Anthony Aguilar, who is also a member of CSUSB’s fraternity Sigma Nu, mentions how “college is when people come in with more open minds and people need to be aware that this is how some people choose to live their lives, so maybe attending an event or two can really help out.”
Despite the lack of participation, the Queer and Transgender Resource Center has had its accomplishments. Their 5th annual Lavender Graduation ceremony put on by the LGBTQ+ faculty, staff, and student association commemorates LGBTQ+ students who are graduating.
“Lavender Graduation has gotten a lot bigger and had over 100 people in attendance this past year,” says Stumreiter. Stumreiter hopes to keep gaining more attendance for the following years to come.
Not only does the center provide the Lavender Graduation, but they will host their annual “Transgender Week of Remembrance” in November that honors the lives of transgender people who have died in the past year from transphobic violence.
Stumreiter advises students to get more involved with the LGBTQ+ community and the Queer and Transgender Resource Center by going to the center and talking to people, attending events, and just hanging out.
“It’s 2019, we live in a time where it’s probably most susceptible to be gay and college campuses are a perfect way to start getting involved in the LGBTQ+ community”, says Aguilar.