As the spring semester begins, Baldwin Wallace’s LGBTQ association, Allies, welcomes students to their events and meetings that will be held in the coming months.
The highlight of the semester will be the Pride Prom, which is held in early April. A Pride Prom is a formal dance. However, it’s also designed to be a space in which same-sex and gender non-conforming couples can feel safe and be open with one another. As with any of Allies’ events, all couples and individuals are welcome at the event.
Weekly meetings for Allies are held from 6-7 p.m. in Sandstone 2. Interested students are welcome to come to the meetings at any time; they can also join the Allies mailing list by speaking to any one of the Allies officers. The meetings include activities, movies, and open forums for students to discuss LGBTQ issues such as religion, gender identity, and being out on campus.
The Allies office is also an open space, located just behind the Cyber Café in the Union. The office is designed to be a place for students to relax, hang out, and enjoy a cup of coffee. There is a designated Allies officer in the room whenever it is open, so students who have questions, or want to get involved on campus can get answers there.
The most important part of Allies, according to treasurer Sam Dean, is that it is a safe, welcoming space for anyone.
“We know it can be intimidating to join such a large group, especially if you aren’t sure of how your identity fits into the community,” says Dean. “but no matter where anyone falls on the spectrum, we invite them to join us. We’re here to inform, support, and, most importantly, to have a good time!”
One of the goals that Allies is pursuing in 2018 is to have a larger campus presence. As a group that exists to serve students at BW, they are looking to inspire and educate more people about the importance of LGBTQ rights, and to help these students recognize that there is a place for them in the community.
“Allies has helped me personally become a more well-rounded individual and to find my place at BW,” Dean explains.
Other students have had similar experiences with the group. Current president and BW sophomore, Vex Cassius, is also grateful for the impact the group has made.
“Allies helped me make friends with a diverse set of people whom I would not have met otherwise,” Cassius said.
“I am very grateful for the time I get to spend with those in LGBT+[sic] community, and for the many beautiful Allies I met along the way.”