QSA Speaker Series sets itself apart

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Staff Writer


The Polar Vortex not only upset classes during the week of Jan. 27th, many events were disrupted and postponed due to the weather as well, including the a speaker for Queer Straight Alliance (QSA).

Linda Lyons, a photography professor, was scheduled to speak on Wednesday, Jan. 30 but had to be rescheduled to March 6.

While that specific event had to reschedule, many other QSA events are still on for their originally announced date including speaker Rob Decleene, the executive director of Visit South Bend Mishawaka, on Wednesday, Feb. 13 at 6:00 p.m. in the Student Activities Center room 225.

While a speaker series is nothing new to IU South Bend, the QSA’s version of it certainly is. QSA’s President Katelyn Firestein has high hopes for it.

“My thought was with all the college aged people in the LGBTQ community, it’s real easy to think about when you are going to get a job, are people going to discriminate because you fit a certain stereotype or they can tell you are trans or that you’re gay or whatever,” Firestein said. “I think it’s real encouraging to see people within the LGBTQ community being successful and being professional. The whole goal of the speaker series really is just to bring in influential LGBTQ community members who are also professionals and kind of getting their take on some challenges they face, and what they do professionally and any insights they have to our members.”

While the lineup is notable, TREES Inc. founder Meghan Buell also being included at a later date, one person is left out: Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

When asked why Mayor Buttigieg was not included Firestein clarified that Buttigieg was one of the first people to come to mind for the series. His recent announcement of a bid for President of the United States in the upcoming 2020 election made the QSA rethink.

“It was pitched at one point,” Firestein said, “but that was right before he announced launching the Presidential exploratory committee. That is definitely something we are open to but as far as his availability and time constraints, that is something we are open to in the future.”

Students can follow the IUSB QSA on Facebook for more info on upcoming events and meetings.


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