KSU hosts annual gay support summit

As news of Harvard University’s recent decision to add “gender identity” to its nondiscrimination policy makes its way through academia‚ Kennesaw State kicked off its fourth annual Lesbian‚ Gay‚ Bisexual and Transgender Summit Friday afternoon with a keynote address on transgender rights.

Georgia (Apr 21, 2006) — As news of Harvard University’s recent decision to add “gender identity” to its nondiscrimination policy makes its way through academia‚ Kennesaw State kicked off its fourth annual Lesbian‚ Gay‚ Bisexual and Transgender Summit Friday afternoon with a keynote address on transgender rights.

Attorney Cole Thaler of Lambda Legal spoke specifically about transgender students and what universities must do to support them legally.

Although the university has not yet discussed following Harvard’s lead‚ Dean of Graduate Studies Teresa Joyce‚ who is one of the summit organizers‚ said the issue will arise eventually.

“At some point‚ KSU will have a transgender student‚ faculty or staff member‚” she said. “It’s going to happen‚ so we need to be prepared.”

The summit‚ which is attracting students and faculty from across the state‚ continues Saturday with registration at 9 a.m. in the Student Center University Rooms. Session topics include “Campus Activism: Creating Change on Your College Campus‚” “The Color of Fear” and “GLAAD Media Training.” Also during the summit‚ a middle/high school educator will be honored for outstanding support of LGBT students with the third annual Georgia LGBT Educator of the Year Award. The summit concludes at 4:30 p.m.

“This summit sends a message that there’s a lot of support at KSU‚” Joyce said. “It’s a great opportunity to bring together people from different alliances at different universities in Georgia for networking and education. It’s a chance to discuss how things are going on their campuses‚ how they can promote change and how they can start an alliance.”

This year’s summit will also feature speakers Daniel Helminiak‚ author of the bestseller “What the Bible Really Says about Homosexuality‚” and state Rep. Karla L. Drenner‚ the only openly gay member of the Georgia Assembly.

For more information‚ visit www.kennesaw.edu/safespace





A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers more than 150 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its approximately 38,000 students. With 13 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia and the third-largest university in the state. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the region and from 92 countries across the globe. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status, and one of the 50 largest public institutions in the country. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu.

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