Published April 19, 2019
In most cities and towns around the country, Pride Week occurs in June or July. For example, Buffalo’s Pride Week runs from May 28-June 2.
The timing of such celebrations, however, means that many UB students aren’t able to participate in the festivities since they’ve either returned home or are working summer jobs or internships.
That’s why the Diversity Advocates in UB’s Intercultural and Diversity Center and several other campus sponsors are bringing Pride Week to UB, and it starts Monday. A Pride Parade will take place Wednesday afternoon on the North Campus.
"We hope that a UB Pride Parade will foster an environment of inclusion where students can feel safe and comfortable marching with friends and allies, as well as reaffirming the university's commitment to its LGBTQ+ students," said Rutuja Sawant, one of three Diversity Advocates in the Intercultural and Diversity Center who came up with the idea for this year's week-long celebration.
The Diversity Advocates — Sawant, Kay Kennedy and Jabril Moore — and Fred Brown, a graduate intern in the Intercultural and Diversity Center, were instrumental in crafting the event lineup, which was meant to expand on IDC's Queer Prom.
"This idea took shape because, as a gay man, I knew what attending Pride meant and what Pride meant to me personally," said Brown. He also knew that many UB students aren't around for Buffalo's Pride activities. "I wanted to bring Pride to our students and let them get a taste of a Pride event," he said.
All events are open to UB faculty, staff and students. Response among members of the UB community has been strong and overwhelmingly positive.
"So far, I have had a lot of people express to me that they are glad to see this taking place at UB," Sawant said, adding, "Some students have not been to a Pride Parade yet and I am glad that this will be their first."
Added Brown: "I believe this will go down as one of the IDC's and moreover UB's shining moments."
Here’s the full Pride Week lineup:
Pride Week is sponsored by the LGBTQ Faculty and Staff Association; Intercultural and Diversity Center, which is part of Student Life; the Office of Inclusive Excellence; the College of Arts and Sciences; oSTEM; Campus Living; and the Residence Hall Association.