UA to celebrate LGBTQ+ students with annual ‘Rainbow Graduation’


University of Arizona is hosting its annual Rainbow Graduation for LGBTQ+ graduates on Thursday, May 11. (Courtesy of the UA LGBTQ+ Resource Center)

The University of Arizona’s LGBTQ+ Resource Center hosts its annual “Rainbow Graduation” this week to celebrate graduates who are a part of the queer community.

According to the center’s director, Kristen Godfrey, about 40 students have registered to participate in this year’s event, which will be the 16th installment overall.

The event will be from noon to 2 p.m. Thursday, May 11, in the Stevie Eller School of Dance Theatre. The keynote speaker will be Jalessah Jackson, an interdisciplinary cultural worker from Atlanta, Georgia. They have also taught graduate and undergraduate courses in topics such as public health and both African and African diaspora studies.

The LGBTQ+ Resource Center will also present awards to faculty and staff including fabulous faculty member, staff member of the year, queer icon and intern of the year. Staff members from every discipline on campus are eligible for nomination.

The ceremony and presentation of the awards will take place in the first hour of the event. In the second hour, there will be music, dancing and food. Graduating students participating in the event will receive a certificate and a rainbow cord. 

There is no ticket process for the event, so all students, friends and family are welcome to attend. Godfrey also added that last year’s event had about 200 attendees and that it is a great way for people to “be recognized as their full self.” More information can be found on the LGBTQ+ Resource Center’s Instagram page @ualgbtq.

*El Inde Arizona is a news service of the University of Arizona School of Journalism.

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