BY JESSALYN KIRCHHOFF
FHSU’s Gender & Sexuality Alliance (GSA) is a student-based organization that focuses and promotes the equality of all people, regardless of gender identity or sexual orientation. The FHSU GSA chapter is hosting a themed dance on Saturday
“The theme of the dance is going to be A Summer Night’s Gala,” GSA President Kiernan McCarty said. “The Gala is open to all members and allies of the LGBTQAI2S+ community.”
He continues with the details of the night including that while there is no particular dress code, there will more than likely be some formal wear present.
“I’m picturing the dance as a formal event because if I know our community, we like having a reason to dress up – or maybe that’s just me, I don’t know -so we would love for everyone to show up dressed in whatever formal attire, costume, or flamboyant fit that makes them feel comfortable,: McCarty said. “We just hope this can be a place where you can express your identity anyway you want: fancy, casual, business, drag, it’s up to you – we just ask that there be no nudity of course, but that goes without saying.”
McCarty then shares the reason for the sponsored dance as well as the importance of interacting with others in a group setting, saying the dance is being held to bring the LGBTQ+ members and allies of the community together.
“We want to get our bearings in Hays and indeed, have some good ole fun. There’s a lot of us scattered around here across campus and out in the Hays community in general. I think one of the most important aspects of getting meaningful work done within a community is first, knowing and interacting with your community, then strengthening that trust and support system above all else,” he said.
McCarty expands on this idea with the overall objective of GSA.
“It is the purpose of the organization to create a support system for LGBTQAI2S+ members of the community and to educate both others and ourselves about issues surrounding sexual orientation and gender identity.”
McCarty wraps up with a request for volunteered assistance with the dance, a shoutout to those that have helped thus far, and an open invitation to anyone who would like to join GSA.
“I would also like to advertise that GSA would love anybody’s help, from FHSU students to Hays community members, in putting together all the bits and pieces to make this gala happen by the 30th. We’re running a bit low on funds, time, and experience this year, so we can truly use all the help and knowledge we can get. It’s all hands on deck here.
“Luckily we’ve received so much support from the Black Student Union, as we established a coalition with them and they were so kind to give us the funds this year to make this event happen.”
McCarty said BSU President Danzel Major has been a big help both in helping with this event and serving as a guide and friend.
“Shout out to BSU and particularly Danzel Major for being such a wonderful ally, friend, and mentor to me,” McCarty said. “He’s teaching me to be a more proactive leader and I’m really grateful to have his support and friendship, even when I procrastinate.”
McCarty also wants to emphasize that anyone is welcome to attend GSA meetings, including straight allies. Meetings take place at 7:00 p.m. each week in room A103 in the Schmidt Center for Art & Design.
“You can join our organization’s Tiger Link to receive email and event updates, that’s also where all of our contact info and social media pages are linked,” he said “We also have a Discord Server to communicate directly about announcements, events, life updates, share resources, work on committee planning events, and interact with other members. If that link somehow doesn’t work, those interested in joining the discord can email us.”
The GSA Gala will be at 6:30 p.m on Saturday in the Peter Werth Black & Gold Room located in the Memorial Union.
More info about GSA can be found at the links below.
Tigerlink : https://tigerlink.fhsu.edu/organization/gsa
Discord Server : https://discord.com/invite/AMRyJHKmPn
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org