YSUnity shows support for Coming Out Day

October 11 marked the 25th anniversary of National Coming Out Day. To celebrate the occasion, YSUnity, a student run organization, hosted a Coming Out photo shoot. Any student who wanted to show their pride for National Coming Out Day was welcome to get their picture taken coming out of the closet door in Kilcawley Center’s Hub.
“This is the first year we’ve put it in the middle of Kilcawley. We’re going to be facing students this way. It’s a cool way to interact with people. Students were given signs that say ally on them and were able to walk through the door to show support for what they believe in,” Tim Bortner, vice president of YSUnity, said.
He explained that the door, known as the Coming Out Door, was an opportunity for students to show their support for anyone in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
“The event is campus-wide, and anyone not on campus is welcome as well. You’re able to come out of the closet door as an ally for the LGBT community, even if you’re straight, transgendered or bisexual,” he said.
Mason Donahue, a nursing major, said that he believes the Coming Out Door gives students a good way to show their acceptance of others.
“It doesn’t bother me at all really. If someone believes in something and he or she is willing to fight for it, that’s great. No one should be ashamed of anything he or she believes in,” Donahue said.
National Coming Out Day’s photo shoot was just one event YSUnity hosted to celebrate their Coming Out Week. Other events included an HIV awareness table, a bake sale, a Transgender and LGBTQIA discussion, an organizational fair and a diversity prom.
Bortner said that Coming Out Week has been on campus for 10 years, and the events change each year.
“The organizational fair was new this year. It’s a bunch of different organizations from the community like Parents, Families, Friends, and Allies United; Marriage Equality in Ohio; and Comprehensive Behavioral Care to discuss the different issues in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community,” Bortner said.
Bortner explained that Coming Out Week ended with a Diversity Prom, a new addition to the week as well.
“The prom is brand new. It’s a diversity prom which allows you to go back to prom with who you want to go to prom with — whether you’re gay or transgendered or bisexual, or race played an issue with who you went with,” Bortner said.