Voices of LGBTQ community represented in new publication

Third release of “Out.” yields a full turnout at The Cabin

Timothy Spierings

More stories from Timothy Spierings


Photo by Julia Van Allen

More copies of “Out.” will soon be available in the Bridge.

Students tucked into what space they could find as they looked to the microphones set up in a line at The Cabin. Over the night, various students would come forward to read their works to the gathered crowd, with performances by Callisto and student band Free Garbage.

These people were all gathered for one reason: the release of a book, titled “Out.”

On its third release, “Out.” is compiled every year by the Gender and Sexuality Resource Center. All submissions in the book are from members of the LGBTQ community on campus.

This year, the “Out.” release on April 17 was a combined book release and open mic event.

Abbey McKern, a fifth-year women’s gender and sexuality studies student and GSRC intern, said “Out.” focuses on the individuals creating the works instead of the collective identity of the LGBTQ community.

“I feel like there’s a lot of pressure when it comes to events like this and to publish things like this — that it has to be strictly about LGBTQ issues or about queer issues or queer life or queer identity,” Mckern said.

McKern created the cover of “Out.” this year and organized all of the submissions. Her coworker, Aja St. Germaine, a GSRC intern and first-year women’s gender and sexuality studies and English student, worked on advertising “Out.” so people would send in submissions.

“It was events we would put on that made them feel comfortable enough on campus to be able to come out,” St. Germaine said. “I think that’s just a really fortunate thing because college is such a pivotal time to shape who you’re going to be for the rest of your life.”

Ev Andor, a fourth-year women’s gender and sexuality studies student and GSRC intern, also helped compile works for the release, as well as had a few submitted pieces in the book itself.

One piece, titled “Et tu, Brutus” speaks of Andor’s relationship with skateboarding, Andor said.

“It’s about me wanting to get back into skateboarding despite the fact of all the scars I have on my body (are) from doing it and missing it every time that winter hits, and the moment that spring comes it’s the very first thing that I do,” Andor said.

Andor also submitted three photos, two in a submission titled “Caution and Beauty” and the third titled “Chicago.” Andor submitted works to “Out.” last year as well.

Andor said “Out.” is important because it provides an explicit space for people to put their voices out there.

“So like it’s not like NOTA, where you take the best art of the semester to get submitted and then it all gets chronicled in one space,” Andor said. “It’s much more about the people making it than necessarily what’s going into it.”

While all copies of “Out.” were taken at the release party, McKern said the GSRC plans to print more.

“They’re not printed yet because we have to add the GSRC logo and stuff,” Mckern said. “But they will be there within the next few weeks and definitely up until the end of the year. We’re also attempting to create a digital format so that people can find it online as well.”

Spierings can be reached at [email protected].