Lawrence students tend to take on a personal responsibility to broaden the campus community’s views on diversity and and inclusion.
Colores is a new club at Lawrence aiming to empower LGBTQ+ people of color and educate all students on what it means to be an LGBTQ+ person of color. Weekly meetings for Colores have been being held in the Diversity Center.
Freshmen Amy Degraff-Castro and Jessie Zelaya, the co-presidents of Colores, want to create a new, open space for LGBTQ+ people of color to feel comfortable discussing topics on queer dating and general pride.
“We had a general interest meeting and talked to people to see if this was something people were interested,” said Degraff-Castro. “There was interest, and so far our meetings have been well attended.”
The goal of Colores is to focus on support, raising awareness as a way of educating the campus community and to learn about themselves in who they are and take action.
Sophomore Rebecca Bernheimer is excited to be in this club. “I am glad it exists because I think it is an important place to be on campus and so I enjoy getting to learn and be supportive in any way that I can,” said Bernheimer.
This academic year has been an especially transformative time for the LGBTQ+ community on campus. With the discussions that took place during Winter Term about the role and inclusivity of GLOW, students on campus seem eager to redefine the parameters of intersectionality within the community. Colores aims to create an inclusive space for members of the LGBTQ+ community that may have felt excluded or ignored, especially LGBTQ+ identifying people of color.
Freshman Jorgan Jammal, a member of Colores, added “Back home, I was in a place where a group like this never existed. I am glad to be a part of this and have the opportunity to celebrate my identity.”
Members of Colores sold stickers during the Spring Carnival this term to get the word out about their organization and make its goals clear. Colores also had a movie night on May 16, celebrating love and identity together.
Next year Colores hopes to host movie festivals and cooking events. These programs will serve as a chance for Lawrence students to learn about the club and be educated about LGBTQ+ people of color issues. Colores also hopes to have allyship, dating and sex education workshops aimed towards the general Lawrence community. Their long term goal is to have an LU Pride Parade.
Colores is determined to be a healthy and welcoming space open to all. It is a safe forum for LGBTQ+ people of color to have a voice in the campus community. Colores meets on Tuesday nights at 9 p.m. in the Diversity Center. Students who are interested in joining Colores should contact the co-presidents Jessie Zelaya and Amy Degraff-Castro.