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Thursday, December 7, 2023

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The Pride Flag symbolizes the diversity of sexual orientations and gender identities in the SDSU community. The Pride Flag symbolizes the diversity of sexual orientations and gender identities in the SDSU community.

Celebrating the LGBTQ Community

SDSU’s 10th annual Pride Flag Raising Ceremony takes place on Friday, July 7.
By Katie White

The Rainbow Flag will fly over San Diego State University this month as the campus kicks off its Pride festivities. The flag symbolizes the diversity of sexual orientations and gender identities in the SDSU community.

It will be raised at the Conrad Prebys Aztec Student Union Courtyard during SDSU’s 10th annual Pride Flag Raising Ceremony from 12-1 p.m. on Friday, July 7. The ceremony gives the campus community an opportunity to come together to celebrate the accomplishments of its LGBTQ students and look ahead to future initiatives.

“Inclusion and equity are paramount to the success of our students,” said Eric Rivera, vice president for Student Affairs. “At SDSU, all students have the opportunity to build community and connections, and the flag raising ceremony is just one of the ways the university shows its commitment to LGBTQ students. When students feel welcome, safe and valued, they have the capacity to grow academically and personally.”

Celebrating recent achievements

SDSU offers numerous events for LGBTQ students and community members throughout the year and has been nationally recognized as one of the most LGBTQ-friendly universities in the nation by the Campus Pride Index. SDSU also ranked No. 7 on the Best Colleges for LGBT Students list and appeared on a College Choice ranking listing the 50 best colleges for LGBTQ students.

In the past year, SDSU added several public gender-neutral restrooms, bringing the campus total to more than 20. Both Zura Hall and South Campus Plaza also have gender-neutral restrooms for their residents. The most recent addition to the growing list is a multi-stall restroom located in the 24-hour area of Love Library. Additional gender-neutral restrooms will be added to a variety of campus locations, including the Engineering and Interdisciplinary Sciences Complex in the near future.

SDSU has offered an LGBT studies minor since 2009, and the LGBT studies major has been offered for five years. This past year, the program received a $100,000 endowed gift from San Diego donor David Gubser. Gubser committed an additional $100,000 to the university’s Pride Center. The gift enabled the Pride Center to retain two student employees in the spring semester and to conduct a student-led retreat for queer and transgender students of color.

“This important gift has allowed the Pride Center to expand its services and reach out to a group of students who still face a lot of discrimination in society,” said Christopher Lujan, Pride Center coordinator. “While a lot of progress has been made in the United States and abroad, queer and transgender students of color are still being marginalized, so paying attention to their needs is vital to their success.”

Parade contingent

Lujan said this year's San Diego Pride parade theme, "Allied in Action, United in Justice," reflects the LGBTQ community’s emphasis on social justice issues.

As in years past, an SDSU delegation will participate in the city’s Pride celebration. The 43rd annual San Diego Pride Parade takes place at 11 a.m. on Saturday, July 15 in Hillcrest. Faculty, staff, students, alumni and administrators who wish to participate in the festivities as part of the SDSU group are asked to visit the SDSU Pride Center website.