PULLMAN — The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Allies Program at Washington State University has changed its name. The program, with offices located in the basement of the Compton Union Building, is now called the Gender Identity/Expression and Sexual Orientation Resource Center.
Director Heidi Stanton said that, as a way to ensure the new name stays current for many more years, it was best to choose one that defines the center in broad terms rather than mentioning specific groups. “Our new name is welcoming and inclusive for all members of our community,” she said.
The center opened in 1994 to provide support and resources for faculty, staff and students. Today, Stanton estimates at least 1,000 people use its services every month.
Among the center’s numerous programs are a speakers’ bureau, brown bag series, PRIDE Week, National Coming Out Day, the Week of Dignity, HIV prevention education, Family Thanksgiving and Lavender Graduation. The center’s library resources include magazines, more than 800 books and many movies for checkout.
“We are called upon to provide training sessions, classroom discussions, serve on committees, position searches, as well as respond to concerns and incidents as they occur,” said Stanton.
WSU takes pride in having the most comprehensive program of this nature in the higher education system of the state, she said. “The call for our services and expertise regionally and nationally is increasing,” Stanton said. “As GLBT civil rights evolve and become more mainstream, leaders across the nation work together to share resources, challenge inequities and create change. It is very exciting for our center to be among those leaders.”
On March 13, the Gender Identity/Expression and Sexual Orientation Resource Center will relocate to Smith Gym 320 while the CUB is being remodeled.