Lessons Learned from University of Kansas
August 25, 2011 by Candace Gingrich, Associate Director, Youth and Campus Engagement Program
Now that I’m showered and a bit rested after our HRC Equality Bus open-house at University of Kansas it is time to share some of our day with you all. I learned a few things today that are worth mentioning:
One is that I didn’t realize it could be so darn hot in the Mid-west! I think the heat index was 105 and the sun was brutal.
Second, when actually in the state of Kansas it is exponentially more likely that someone will accidentally say “Kansas” when they mean “Candace.” Not a problem, though, I’ve definitely heard worse.
Third, Jayhawk students are very forgiving when you forget to consider school rivalries and show up on campus wearing a Kansas State purple “Born This Way” t-shirt.
Fourth – and I think I already knew this but it was good to have it affirmed – college age students care about LGBT equality and are keenly aware of how harmful bullying is for LGBT youth. Hundreds of students were eager to sign postcards in support of passing the Student Non-Discrimination Act and the Safe Schools Improvement Act. And it wasn’t only students visiting today - there were dozens of staff, faculty and administrators (and often their significant others) who came by the bus.
Many thanks to Lawrence & the University of Kansas for making the HRC Equality Bus so welcome today. Generation Equality today showed me again that students will take action to support LGBT equality will be part of the change if you give them the opportunity. What a great feeling to know that some of the LGBT and allied Jayhawks who stopped by today are the elected officials, school board members, parents and decision makers of the future.