The University is dedicated to making the institution a supportive and inclusive environment for the LGBT+ community all year round. In October 2019, Loughborough was announced as a Stonewall Diversity Champion, and 1,300 pairs of Rainbow Laces were sold on campus to make a stand against homophobia, biphobia and transphobia in sport.
February is dedicated to celebrating the LGBT+ community at Loughborough – both historically and currently.
LU Arts are hosting a special Happy Mondays workshop to decorate lampshades with materials representing LGBT+ history on 3 February. These will be used as decorations for their second event – ‘Let’s Gather to Remember Everything We Forget’ – an exhibition with a specially designed cocktail menu for an immersive look at Loughborough’s LGBT+ history.
The LGBT+ Association has organised a Re-Meet and Greet on 4 February for students looking to learn about what the Association does and meet new people. They have also teamed up with the Careers Network to deliver a talk about being LGBT+ in the workplace on 10 February. The panel will share their own struggles and successes as well as giving advice.
On 5 February, the Pride in Research event will showcase LGBT+ researchers with a keynote presentation from renowned academic and LGBT+ activist Dr Clara Barker. She won a Points of Light Award from the Prime Minister in 2017 for her volunteer work with LGBT+ groups and is a thin-film material scientist at Oxford University. On her talk, she said: “I share my personal story as an LGBTI+ person in academia and research, including an overview of the work I do as a thin-film material scientist.
“I will discuss why it pays to be more inclusive in academia, how STEMM is strengthened by having researchers of all different backgrounds, and share initiatives that I believe are bringing real change to academia.”
The event has been organised by LSU, the LGBT+ Association, the School of Science and Dr Eugénie Hunsicker. Loughborough researchers will also present their work with time for questions afterwards.
On 13 February four PhD students will present their research on experiences, media coverage and policy frameworks around trans people and sport. Loughborough academic, Dr Marcus Collins, will give a talk on the representation of homosexuality in the media in the 1960s and there will also be a screening of the documentary ‘The Trans Women Athlete Dispute’ with members of Loughborough’s Beyond the Binary available to take questions on their experiences making the documentary.
Further information about the LGBT+ Association and the LGBT+ Staff Group is available online if you want to find out more.