The University of Idaho’s LGBTQA Office will host three events to celebrate National Coming Out Day Oct. 11.
The main event will be a fair on Oct. 11 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Idaho Commons Plaza. Many community and campus organizations will be involved in the fair.
“It’s a good way to have some fun and show that we have a lot of allies on campus,” said Julia Keleher, LGBTQA office coordinator.
The LGBTQA office will hold Queer Discussions at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 14 in Memorial Gym room 109, as the second event in the series.
The discussions will address LGBTQA sexuality, misconceptions about LQBTQA sexuality and other topics.
The final event, a keynote address, will take place Oct. 16. Paulina Helm-Hernandez will speak at 7 p.m. in Agricultural Science, room 106.
“For the keynote speaker, it’s going to be a really fun hour where you get to learn and think about something and learn different perspectives,” Keleher said. “I think that’s why we’re all in college is to learn more about the world and to better ourselves as more well rounded citizens.”
Helm is the co-director of a group called Southerners on New Ground. Helm is self-described as a “queer femme cha-cha girl, artist trainer and political organizer.” She is originally from Veracruz, Mexico.
“She is the co-director of an organization called Southerners On New Ground, which is a non-profit organization that was created to empower people of color, particularly queer people of color,” Keleher said.
Keleher said she believes Helm can bring a new perspective to students.
The event is free and open to the public.
“It’s just a celebration and a way to show folks on the UI campus that LGBTQA people are wanted and welcomed and supported and to get allies out,” Keleher said.
Iris Alatorre can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org