The Northwoods Queer Outreach is an initiative that aims to increase queer and transgender representation, support and acceptance across campus and within the Bemidji community.
The NQO is valuable to queer individuals in that (1) they and their identities will be validated in a public, accessible way; (2) the amount of emotional labor they will need to do will decrease due to the organized resources available (that is, they won’t need to be “experts” educating others about their identities); and (3) they will have the ability to steer the direction and resources for the NQO.
Non-queer individuals will also benefit from the creation of the NQO in several ways: (1) they will be able to learn about issues related to queer and transgender individuals in a self-paced, non-threatening way; and (2) community organizations who want to support queer causes will be able to contribute. Overall, the NQO will generate opportunities for understanding, seek to diminish stereotypes and discrimination, and create a more inclusive environment for all.
Providing valuable education and resources for the LGBTQQIAP2S+ student community in northern rural Minnesota to promote a welcoming and inclusive environment for all.
Learn more about NQO and its goals here.
Note: LGBTQIAP2S+ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning, intersex, asexual, two-spirit.
Note: The term “queer” throughout this narrative signifies queer-sexual and queer-gender identities, as well as those who are part of the LGBTQIAP2S+ community.