The following entry was written by Amber Bigwood, Class of 2014.
Adjusting to college is an overwhelming experience for any incoming freshman no matter what school they are attending, and coming to college as a part of the LGBT community can sometimes feel even more overwhelming. Luckily, the Emerson community is characterized by its openness and accepting attitude. Student groups like EAGLE, along with numerous LGBTQ-related events around campus, make our campus a welcoming environment for everyone.
Emerson’s Alliance for Gays, Lesbians, and Everyone (EAGLE) is Emerson’s multicultural organization devoted to “promoting visibility and acceptance of queer culture throughout the campus and community.” With weekly meetings, the group welcomes any interested student with open arms and is a very active organization on campus, sponsoring social, academic, and awareness functions and events relevant to the LGBTQ community.
One such event is the annual Dragtoberfest – a student produced drag show in October that continuously proves to be one of EAGLE’s most popular and anticipated events. It brings in a full house every year! EAGLE also holds Queer Spring, a month of LGBTQ events promoting everything from queer history and culture to safe sex practices. This year, Student Life has added Transgender Awareness Week to the bill to further campus-wide acceptance and knowledge of both sexuality and gender identity.
In addition, Emerson offers courses related to queer theory, such as Evolution of Queer Identity, as part of our interdisciplinary studies, and the counseling center has instituted a weekly LGBTQ support group. There are offices on campus that support students like Multicultural Student Affairs, LGBTQ Resources, and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion. The staff and administration at Emerson are always considering the LGBTQ population at the college.
The abundant resources, concerted advocacy, and overall accepting environment make Emerson a benchmark: for the second year in a row, Emerson was ranked #1 by the Princeton Review for LGBTQ friendliness.