Millersville University (MU) will host the inaugural coming out week Oct. 7-11. Presented by the Dr. Rita Smith Wade-El Intercultural Center, Coming Out Week will incorporate Pridefest and the 6th annual drag show.
Dubbed OUTober due to National Coming Out Day taking place on Oct. 11, the week will feature various events that focus on LGBTQIA pride. These events will also commemorate LGBT History Month. The program strives to promote awareness and instill pride in the LGBTQIA+ and straight ally community on campus.
National Coming out Day is an annual LGBT awareness day that focuses on the importance of living life openly. OUTober’s goal is to highlight all of MU’s LGBTQIA+ members and to provide representation for all MU students.
Millersville student Tyler Cook helped organize 2019 OUTober and Pridefest.
“Events like OUTober give marginalized students a chance to feel welcomed in an environment that is not always welcoming,” says Cook. “Pride is not only a celebration, but it is a reflection and a remembrance of the people who fought and died for LGBTQIA+ rights. Millersville students should be proud of how far this institution has come in their work to achieve inclusive excellence.”
Throughout the week, 13 events will take place on campus. On Monday, Oct. 7 the week will kick off with a faculty lunch and staff lunch and learn at noon in room 202 inside the Student Memorial Center (SMC). At 6 p.m. inside the Reighard Multipurpose Room (MPR) there will be a “Lead with Pride” kickoff keynote with guest speaker Dr. Jon Paul Higgins. The night will end at 9 p.m. with LGBT Lingo Bingo in the SMC MPR.
On Tuesday Oct. 8, there will be a film showing at 3 p.m. inside the SMC MPR of “Mala Mala.” At 6 p.m. students can learn more about issues within the LGBT community at the GSA table at the Purple Carnival inside the SMC Promenade. Inside the South Village Great Room at 6 p.m. MU students can participate in the third session of Courageous Conversations by discussing power and privilege through an LGBT lens.
On Wednesday, Oct. 9, OUT-a-Palooza features free food, music and games from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. inside the SMC Atrium. From 3 p.m.to 5 p.m. there will be a LGBTQIA+ Affinity Meet Up. This event will be a closed event for faculty, staff and students of the LGBTQIA+ community. At 6 p.m. inside Myers Auditorium inside McComsey Hall the President’s Commission on Gender and Sexual Diversity presents “Poetry Reading with MegDay.” The evening will finish at 8 p.m. inside the SMC MPR with “Quick Drag 101,” an event that allows students to channel their inner drag queen or king.
A highlight of the week will be the annual drag show featuring local and national queens taking place on Thursday, Oct. 10. The event hosted by Nevaeha Le’Vixenn will feature drag queens Kahmorr Vixenn, Nina West and Peppermint. Taking place inside the Student Memorial Center (SMC) in the Marauder Courts, the drag show will begin at 8 p.m. with doors opening at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets for the drag show can be bought at a discounted price with a MU ID. Tickets for MU students are $10; faculty and staff can purchase tickets for $15 and non-MU community members can purchase tickets for $30. Tickets can be purchased from the ticket box office inside the SMC or at http://www.studentservicesinc.com/ticket-sales/.
The week will wrap up on Friday, Oct. 11 with National Coming Out Day “Paint with Pride” from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. inside the SMC Atrium. Students are encouraged to paint their identity flag on a fan or canvas in celebration of National Coming Out Day.
For more information, please contact the Dr. Rita Smith Wade-El Intercultural Center by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.