It is not often that I go on conferences. So when the opportunity came up to attend the Northeast LGBT Conference at Rochester Institute of Technology I knew I should take the chance. It was the 18th Annual Northeast LGBT Conference. The conference brought over 500 students and advisors from across the Northeast to celebrate, educate, and empower LGBT and Ally student leaders to become agents of change. This year’s theme was “The Ally is YOU”. The term “Ally” refers not only to supportive people outside the LGBT community, but also to those within who make an effort to include and support identities and cultures other than their own.
I attended this conference with Rainbow Union, the LGBT organization on campus. Including advisors and myself there were 14 of us. It was a wonderful experience over all. There was a lot to do and a bunch of workshops we could choose from to attend.
I must admit it was great getting out of Alfred for the weekend, and being able to attend the conference but also see another college. Granted RIT is a private school unlike Alfred State but it was a different change.
One thing that really stuck out to me and surprisingly has nothing to do with LGBT issues or anything of that sort was that just like Alfred State, RIT is going green. When we first registered at the event, aside from being giving an agenda and map of the building and the campus we also received a water bottle. From what we heard at the campus is that they are enforcing the use of reusable water bottles instead of always buying plastic. It’s part of RIT’s overall sustainability efforts to reduce the amount of bottled water use on campus. I think it is a wonderful idea. This semester I started using a Brita water bottle instead of always buying cases of water from Walmart and I must say it is much better.
I plan on speaking to Julian Dautremont-Smith on what Alfred State is currently doing as far as Sustainability. Last semester I sat down with him and discussed Pioneering Sustainability: Alfred State’s Sustainability and Climate Action Plan. Look out for my next editorial. As always we accept articles at any point in time from any one around campus.