Kutztown Clubs Hold Coming Out Day Fair

My sophomore year, when speaking with soon-to-be graduates, I truly didn’t understand why some seniors were looking forward to leaving Kutztown. They were excited and ready, some even expressing negative feelings towards Kutztown. At this time, I had just found my niche. I had just started to love Kutztown and to truly feel like I belonged here.

Halfway through my first semester of senior year, I can now understand why those seniors were ready to step away. On top of the extra stress that senior year brings, I have found myself getting increasingly discouraged by some of the experiences I’ve had this year. I don’t particularly enjoy listening to the mayhem that occurs up and down Main Street Thursday through Sunday, especially when that mayhem often includes overhearing sexist and homophobic conversations.

I understand that these conversations and disruptions will be around anywhere I go, but last year, I didn’t have the sinking feeling that I get now when I hear those kinds of conversations. These conversations are a part of a larger political problem. I want to be proud of my school and of my fellow students, but lately, I find myself feeling embarrassed by them.

This past Thursday, October 12, some of my pride was reawakened as I wandered around the Old Main Concourse. Several Kutztown clubs were holding a Coming Out Day Fair (Feminist Majority Leadership Alliance, Kutztown Allies, Lambda Delta Xi Diaternity, and others I may be forgetting). They had tables set up with posters, tons of pamphlets and handouts with information about coming out/how to be an ally/etc, free t-shirts and buttons, and plenty of snacks. Every single club member I spoke to was welcoming, kind, and open to answering any questions I had about their club or organization.

To make a potentially long story short, I’ve been having a rough semester. I woke up on Thursday feeling generally discouraged, as I have been for the past couple months. But after spending just an hour interacting and engaging with some of the people running and attending this little fair, I felt brand new. It reminded me that there are students on this campus who understand the dangers of sexist and homophobic language, and who work hard to educate others about these social dangers (and other dangers related to these issues). I felt my sense of pride and belonging recharge amid all the kindness, support, and love.