UNI Proud creates a safe space for students

UNI Proud is an inclusive organization for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual,Transgender and Intersex (LGBTIA) students, and allies of the LGBT community at UNI. Founded in the 1970s, the group has grown through the years and has become a highly active, visible and involved organization on campus. In addition to the group's weekly meetings, which are held at 7 p.m., Tuesdays, in the Presidential Room of Maucker Union, the organization hosts a variety of events throughout the year.

UNI Proud
The theme for this year's Pride Week is "Pride and Progress." Events will focus on the political aspects of the LGBT movement.

The group's biggest event is their annual Pride Week, which happens the first week of April. UNI Proud has brought many notable figures to campus for Pride Week, including performance artist Kate Bornstein and photographer Loren Cameron. Another big event that happens during Pride Week is the drag show, which features student performers and draws a crowd of more than 500 in UNI's Maucker Union.

The group's main focus is activism, advocacy and education. The weekly meetings often focus on educating LGBT students and discussing healthy relationships and current news, but the group also reaches out to professors interested in hosting panels to help educate their classes about LGBT issues.

UNI Proud has also been working with faculty and staff to help establish a permanent LGBT Center, which would act as a safe space for all students, offering resources, support and education to the entire UNI community. "UNI Proud was founded on the principles of acceptance, inclusion and equality for all members of the UNI campus community," said David Pope, junior political communications major and president of the organization. "We believe that every student deserves access to a space in which they feel safe and to the resources they need to be happy, healthy and successful at UNI."

UNI Proud will host this year's Pride Week Monday, April 1 through Saturday, April 6. For information about events, visit http://uniproud.tumblr.com/prideweek.