VCU Brings LGBTQ Civil Rights Speaker Shane L. Windmeyer on Campus Today
Shane L. Windmeyer, a nationally renown speaker on LGBT issues and Civil Rights advocate, will speak today at VCU’s Monroe Park University Student Commons Theater at 4:30p.m and at Noon at Larrick Student Center Court End B at the MCV campus.
This event aims to provide insight into the struggles LGBTQ students face on campuses here in Richmond and Nation wide. Gay RVA spoke with Wanda Mitchell, Ed.D., Vice President for Inclusive Excellence at VCU, via email about some details for this event.
Who brought Windmeyer out to VCU? What was the process there?
Equality VCUand the VCU Division of Inclusive Excellence arranged for Shane Windmeyer, co-founder and executive director of Campus Pride, the only national organization for student leaders and campus organizations working to create a safer college environment for LGBT students, to speak to the VCU community about these issues.
One of the working committees of Equality VCU planned the process for presenting VCU’s LGBT Friendly Campus Climate Index results to the campus community. Once the committee agreed to move forward, the leaders met with Wanda Mitchell, Ed.D, Vice President of Inclusive Excellence, to explore strategies for this collaborative event which resulted in bringing a national speaker to campus.
Why Windmeyer? Why did he stand out as a good speaker for this event? How was he selected?
Mr. Windmeyer is an author and noted authority on the campus climate for LGBT students. He has spoken and consulted on campuses across the country. The Campus Pride organization works to create a safer college environment for LGBT students.
There’s been some changes within the office of diversity, could you talk about that some? Why the name change?
The VCU Division for Inclusive Excellence’s name change is intended to reflect the university’s excellence-driven diversity approach. Inclusive excellence is indicative of a comprehensive and well-coordinated set of systemic actions that focus specifically on fostering greater diversity, equity, inclusion and accountability at every level of university life. In addition to the name change for the division, active searches are taking place to fill positions in the division. Effective November 1, 2013, the University will appoint a Diversity Educator and LGBT Coordinator.
What kind of turnout do you all expect?
The events do not require an R.S.V.P., so we are uncertain of how many attendees to expect at this time.
Why bring an LGBT speaker out? Why hold this event now?
The campus community has begun work to identify areas where we can improve our campus climate for our LGBTQQIAA students, faculty and staff and their families. Mr. Windmeyer is a national leader in this area and can offer input and share his expertise as we move forward with our initiatives. We expect that our guest speaker, Mr. Windmeyer, will offer some insights that will aid us in our efforts.
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