By Jenna JohnsonWashington Post Staff WriterFriday, December 11, 2009; 10:22 PM....But less than two months later, Subbaraman interviewed to be that director. She left her job at the University of Maryland's Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Equity and, last August, helped open the LGBTQ Resource Center, the first of its kind at a Jesuit university in the United States. (At Georgetown, LGBTQ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning.)"This is the biggest unmapped frontier in faith," said Subbaraman, a lesbian who grew up in a Hindu family in India and attended a Catholic high school and college.The center has two full-time staff members, a rarity at college resource centers, who provide training sessions and workshops for faculty members and student leaders. They also help students find services on campus and plan events such as Coming Out Week festivities in October and Lavender Graduation, an additional graduation ceremony for gay students........The center was the university's response to two reported anti-gay attacks on students near campus in fall 2007. In one of the two cases, a sophomore was charged with assaulting a fellow student. Prosecutors later dropped the case, citing a lack of evidence, but the event generated publicity and student protests.........Within weeks, Georgetown President John J. DeGioia organized work groups to study how hate crimes are reported, what additional resources gay students needed and how the entire campus was educated on including and understanding gay students.Before doing so, DeGioia met with church leaders to explain what he wanted to do and how his plan would follow church teachings and not advocate for positions contrary to those of the church."At a Catholic and Jesuit university, we most certainly can 'advocate' for LGBTQ students. We can and must advocate for respect, inclusion, understanding, safety, mentoring, dignity, growth and equal opportunity. We can and must advocate for freedom from prejudice, exclusion, discrimination, and homophobia," DeGioia said during a meeting with students and others in October 2007, according to a copy of his remarks....
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Posted by De Sube at 12/12/2009 06:11:00 PM