November 2010

Where is your Pride?

Graphic of The GlBTA logo

by ashleytwigg on November 30, 2010

In today’s world more and more people are coming out and identifying as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgendered. Despite the fact that so many people are coming out, it doesn’t make it any easier for those who are going through it. Often times even after the difficulty of coming out has passed people then begin facing new challenges. However, these are all challenges no one needs to face alone.

Bridgewater State University (BSU) is a school that prides themselves on their diversity. This school constantly promotes its sense of acceptance, tolerance, and understanding. For those who may feel they want to reach out to someone who may need a helping hand, or those looking for some guidance along the way, Bridgewater State has many tools to utilize.

Resources:

Bridgewater State has an entire office dedicated to those who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered, and their allies. The GLBTA Pride Center, their mission is to support the learning and development of GLBTA students and their peers, and to foster a campus climate of inclusion and equity.

This office is responsible for doing so many great things that could certainly make a huge difference in the life of a BSU student seeking help or just seeking answers to questions they may have.  There are hundreds of students who take advantage of these resources, but I am sure there are even more who just need a little more knowledge before they stop by for a visit.

The GLBTA Pride Center, offers confidential support for students as well as developmental counseling. They offer resources, information and referrals so students can use other means to find the answers or information they are seeking.

Events:

Nearly every day in the student announcements, or on the Pride Center facebook page, I constantly see some sort of event the Pride Center is putting on. Not only does the office host their own events regularly but they also co-sponsor events with other groups on campus. Currently they are co-sponsoring the theater production of The Vagina Monologues.

The Pride Center also offers habitual coming out discussion events. Students who may have already come out or are having difficulty doing so can come voice their feelings in a supportive and open environment.  A variety of speakers have attended the school for events in which they share their insight and experiences with other students.

The pride center also hosts a series of fun social events, where students can get to know each other in a relaxed environment. They host different events such as game night’s or movie nights where students can interact with each other on a more personal level.

Similar Experience:

There are always students sitting in the office itself. Chances are that some of these students may have had similar experiences as you, or certainly bestow knowledge surrounding anything you may have a question on.  Meet them!  As much as the staff may help you, you may be someone that just might want to talk to another student.

Meeting a student who has had similar experiences to you may make you feel a lot better, and may just offer that little bit of extra support you had needed.

Just Remember:

Bridgewater State embraces acceptance. These are trying times, and often hard times for those who are struggling with coming out or dealing with coming out once they have. DON’T FORGET: There are so many people at this school that are willing to help you in dealing with whatever difficulty along the way, students and staff alike.

Keep in mind that somewhere on this campus it’s very possible someone else has gone through the same thing you are going through. Seek those people out! People love giving advice, sometimes all you need to do is ask!

Have you ever visited the Pride Center? In what ways have you witnessed acceptance at BSU?

{ 1 comment }

We are more than half way through the semester, for freshman you’ve basically made it! And for seniors, hopefully you’ve been treasuring every last second. But now comes the time where we put on our sweatpants and stuff our faces full of delicious turkey, our mom’s home made stuffing, and your aunt’s special pumpkin pie.

And in holiday tradition we need to ask, what are you thankful for?

I’m thankful for my friends and family, without their support who knows where I would be!

What about you? What are you thankful for this holiday season?

{ 0 comments }

In today’s wireless, connected world, people are networking with each other not only in-person, but through social media as well. Whether it be for professional reasons or for personal reasons, today’s young individual is more likely to add someone new on Facebook before calling them or meeting up with them in person.

Because of this, lonely college students no longer need to have an actively involved social life in order to find a significant other. Thanks to online dating websites and social networking sites on Facebook, e-flirting has gone from taboo to socially acceptable.

Like a Little is a new service for college students that slightly resembles the “Missed Connections” section of Craigslist. It allows people to post up little tidbits of anonymous information about someone they’re interested in romantically. The posts range from things like “we always make eye contact when we’re both in the library on Wednesdays” to revelations of serious feelings, such as “we’ve been friends for so long, but I really just want to be with you all the time.”

While it may just seem like an online version of a bathroom wall, Like a Little has some great features that set it apart from the rest of the college dating sites.

FRUITY COMMENTS

When Like a Little first started out, it was nothing more than a news feed of anonymous sightings and comments, but thanks to the new commenting feature, connections are being made easier than ever before. Don’t worry, you don’t have to use your real name when commenting on a post (actually, you’re not even allowed to), but you’ll be randomly assigned a fruit alias for that post once you comment. Whether it be apple, banana, raspberry, or even guava, these fruit aliases prevent spammers and trolls from making fake responses to posts.

Check out this example of an author who tried to make a fake connection:

LIVE/LAME CHAT

Like a Little recently introduced a live chat box page where college students would be able to chat instantly about whatever they wanted, but so far it’s more like an unorganized collection of rants, random factoids, and depressing ramblings.

Although the chat box needs a lot of improvement, it has the potential to take the site to the next level.

1st COMES LIKE, THEN COMES MESSAGE…

So let’s say you’re browsing through the feed and you find a post that you’re pretty sure is about you. What’s the next step you should take?

First, you should “like” the post. This will save it to your personal page (easily titled “you”). By saving the post, you will be notified each time there’s a comment on the post, so you won’t ever have to worry about your admirer (or competition, for that matter) sneaking in a comment without you seeing. Oh, and make sure to leave your own comment on the post before someone else tries to make your connection!

If you’re fairly positive that the post is about you (or maybe even someone you know), the next step would be to message the author. The private messaging system on Like a Little is simple and easy-to-use. There’s no character limit, so feel free to message your admirer for however long you want before you decide to add each other on Facebook or, if you’re ready, meet up for coffee.

And just so we’re clear, the messaging system is unlike the rest of the site in the fact that it’s 100% private. No one will be able to see your messages, so be yourself and don’t hold back.

Check out this person who made the first step rather successfully:

So far, Like a Little has taken off in over 50 campuses, but it’s expanding rapidly. Bridgewater State University is in the top 10 most active campuses right up there with Boston University and Stanford, so let’s try to stay high on that list.

Also, the site is currently accepting internship applications, so if you have any web design or coding experience, you may want to try your luck and apply. You could be part of the next big thing in social networking.

Also, if you happen to bump into head blogger Courtney Cormier on campus, let her know she has a secret admirer.

Have you heard of Like A Little? What do you think of it?

{ 2 comments }