“Fear, stigma and violence that many people experienced then are still very present for those coming out now,” Hunter Kirschner, the program support assistant for LGBTQ students, said about the safe space session that was held on Tuesday, February 18.
The event was focused on the coming out process and why and how it is necessary to support someone who is coming out.
Seven students attended the event as well as faculty members Celia Rabinowitz, Jayme Hines and Gloria Lodge.
Discussed at the event was Ellen Degeneres coming out on live television in 1997 and how people understand the coming out process.
This safe space session gave students the opportunity to grapple with those realities that surround the coming out process, and give them tools to challenge them.
Kirschner said, “To create a campus community where everyone feels like they can belong, we must work together to understand and care about one another.”
There will be two more safe space sessions held this academic year.
The next session will be titled “Pronouns and Identities: A Safe Space Session.”
The event will be held in the Cohen Center room 142, inside of the Mason Library, on Friday, March 13, at 10:30 a.m.
The session will last about an hour.
The objective of these safe space sessions is to dive deeper into core concepts to support and understand the LGBTQ identities and experiences around campus and around everyday life.
Kirschner stresses that all students, staff and faculty are encouraged to attend these sessions to build upon previous knowledge about the topics.
If you have any questions, comments or concerns about the safe space sessions, or want to contact Kirschner directly, he can be contacted at Hunter.Kirschner@keene.edu.
Connor Crawford can be contacted at