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Gender and Sexuality Alliance helps students feel welcomed on campus

December 9, 2018

The Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) is a student organization with a focus on the LGBTQ+ community and allies of the community. This organization meets every Thursday night at 7:30 p.m. They are located in the St. Croix room on the third floor of the University Center.

The organization began a little under a decade ago. Co-president Krystal Kleven said, “This club provides a safe place for people with a different sexual orientation, or different gender other than straight/male/female.”

This organization helps students who may be confused about different aspects of their lives. It provides resources and support to members. “This club allows members to have fun and relax for an hour every week,” said President Brooklyn Jenness.

An event that the GSA hosts annually is the drag show. The drag show takes place in mid to end of October, as well as in April. “GSA is also involved with the sexual emergency response team here in River Falls, [and] the money made at the drag show is donated there,” said Kleven.

GSA also is involved in things off of campus. “Things we do off campus include picnics with PFLAG, a group in town who is basically a GSA for the community for River Falls [. . .]. GSA also volunteers, and a table at the “Take Back the Night” event that happens in spring,” said Kleven. Take Back the Night is an event for victims and survivors of sexual assault, focused on giving them a voice.

This group offers an opportunity to meet with unique individuals in a safe space. “GSA [. . .] offers endless support. We don’t judge, and we allow people to open up and be who they really are,” said Jenness. GSA has strived to make an impact on campus.  

In the future, the GSA plans to remain a safe place for everyone. “We want the club to keep growing as well. We love seeing new members every semester. We would love to plan events, keep the drag show strong, and be welcoming to all those interested,” said Jenness. The GSA plans to continue to expand awareness of issues within the LGBTQ+ community.