LGBTQ students discuss life on campus

first_imgLike many students, senior Melanie LeMay decided to attend Notre Dame for an elite education, to strengthen her faith and because it was a place where she felt at home.“My story about coming to Notre Dame is pretty much like any other Notre Dame student’s,” LeMay said.Two months into her freshman year, however, LeMay said she discovered she was gay and suddenly felt isolated at the University she previously called home.“It felt right, it felt real. But at the same time, it was devastatingly scary,” she said. “I felt alone and isolated and unwelcome, like I couldn’t tell anyone.”For months, LeMay refrained from coming out to her friends, and even dated a male as she struggled to come to terms with her sexuality.“After I knew I was gay, I tried to be straight. I was worried about the ramifications of my faith life,” she said. “I cared about him a lot, but I didn’t have romantic feelings for him. We broke up in April and that is what sealed the fact that I was gay.”By April of her freshman year, she said she had come out to her friends with positive results and had been welcomed into the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) community on campus.“For the first time, I felt like I was coming home to Notre Dame again like I had when I first got there as a freshman,” she said. “I could be myself and be comfortable here and flourish here, and there are people who would love me and accept me for who I am.”However, that is not to say that being gay at Notre Dame is easy.In response to T-shirts that said ‘Gay? Fine by me,’ some students made T-shirts that said ‘Gay? Go to hell,’ LeMay said.“If I had been a closeted student seeing a student wearing a shirt like that, it would have just pushed me further into the closet,” she said.Senior Patrick Bears, an openly gay male, said he knows of many students who had the word ‘fag’ written on the bulletin boards outside their dorm rooms.But Bears said it is more common for students to act uncomfortable, rather than hateful, around gay students.“When I was living in Stanford, I was pretty much the gay kid on the first floor. Some of the kids would just give me weird looks when I walked by,” Bears said. “They looked as if I was terrifying, as if I had giant talons for hands.”Senior Eddie Velazquez, who knew he was gay when he decided to attend the University, said subtle looks or comments take a toll on students who are not completely comfortable with their sexuality.“It’s the equivalent of throwing a tiny pebble at somebody. If each comment is one pebble, you think it’s just one pebble, it’s not going to hurt,” he said. “Over the course of a semester, they add up to 1,000 pebbles. Suddenly, the burden is a lot heavier.”Bears attributed students’ behavior to ignorance rather than outright discrimination.“They don’t really have any experience,” he said. “It’s more or less a fear that comes out of ignorance.”Bears said students could become more educated simply by asking questions.“For most any gay person, if you have any questions, feel free to ask us about them,” he said. “A lot of us are more than willing to talk.”Another way students can help facilitate an accepting environment for the LGBTQ community is to lead by example, Valezquez said.“When you act in a positive manner and when you show willingness to accept, good vibes are contagious,” he said.One particular challenge for gay students is finding and connecting with other gay students because currently no official student club exists for the LGBTQ community, Velazquez said.“One of the concerns for gay students who do enter into our student body is that they may not necessarily find gay students to find interests with and to talk to,” Velazquez said. “Until they do find a good group of friends, it’s difficult for students to be able to relate to their peers.”Core Council for Gay and Lesbian Students, an advisory group to the Vice President of Student Affairs, has meetings that attract a regular group of 15 to 20 students. However, many more LGBTQ students attend the University, Velazquez said.Despite having a smaller pool to choose from, LeMay said dating definitely occurs.“I was in a long-term relationship with another Notre Dame student my sophomore and junior year, so it is possible to date here,” she said. “I know that we interact a lot with the Saint Mary’s gay community as well, which helps the girls.”Velazquez said the dating patterns among the LGBTQ community at Notre Dame are quite similar to those of heterosexual students at Notre Dame.“They are gay students, but they are still Notre Dame students. So they still fall into the same range,” he said. “I know people who have been in the same relationship for three years and then other people who just do not take interest.”The students said Notre Dame, which is repeatedly ranked high on Princeton Review’s list of ‘Alternative lifestyles not an alternative,’ was more accepting than its reputation may imply.“There is this kind of idea that Notre Dame is a terrible place for you to be gay. It may be worse than other schools, but it’s better than a lot of schools,” Bears said.Though LeMay said she probably would not have come to Notre Dame if she had known she was gay, she has no regrets.“I’ve had a happy four years here, three of which I was out,” LeMay said. “I would not change my experience for anything.”last_img read more

SMC students host Hypatia Day to encourage STEM participation

first_imgSaint Mary’s will emphasize feminism in the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields this Saturday with Hypatia Day. Named after the Greek mathematician, astronomer and philosopher Hypatia, the conference takes place to encourage young girls in seventh and eighth grades interested in participating in STEM fields.Associate professor of mathematics and computer science Kristin Kuter said the day is meant to interest more young women in STEM fields before they enter high school.“The goal is to encourage these girls to continue to study STEM and to pursue an education in STEM,” Kuter said.These girls will participate with Saint Mary’s students in activities in the fields in which they are interested. The chemistry, biology, physics, math, computer science, engineering and nursing clubs will host sessions with the girls, teaching them new things and giving demonstrations.The day will start with a speech from keynote speaker Laura Kloepper, assistant biology professor. Kloepper said she wants to inspire younger girls to be in science.“I like to get other people excited, not just about my work, but about science in general too,” Kloepper said.After the speech, the girls will go to sessions and demonstrations in their chosen fields.The biology club will help its participants to extract DNA from strawberries and put the DNA in necklaces.“All the students can go home wearing a necklace of strawberry DNA,” Kloepper said.Senior biology major Stephanie Dreessen said the club will also have the students examine and dissect preserved specimens.“We have a sheep heart, some crayfish, [we’ll] look at differences of a turtle that lives on land verses water, some owls,” Dreessen said. “And we’re also looking at some genetic base stuff, such as fruit flies, seeing some differences underneath a microscope.”According to senior nursing major Tyler Booth, the girls attending the nursing session will learn a lot of nursing practices, including bandaging and taking vitals.“We’re teaching them how to wrap legs and arms,” Booth said, “We’re teaching them how to take pulses, blood pressures. We’re teaching them how to listen to heart sounds and lung sounds on our medi-man.”Junior physics and applied math major Rachel Bonek said the physics club will teach its students projectile motion with a mini-cannonball demonstration.“They can calculate how far it’s going to go based on the angle in the force we put behind it,” Bonek said. “It should be fun.”One of the events of the day focuses on talking to parents about how to encourage their daughters who are interested in science.“We talk about the academic preparation and development of the daughters,” Kuter said.Senior biology major Cassie Libbing will be on the student panel, made up of STEM majors, which will answer parents’ questions about education and how to support their daughters.“Just by sharing experience, I think it gives them a better vision of what it might come to be for their daughters and also see the variety of paths you can take within the STEM area,” Libbing said.For the event, almost as many Saint Mary’s students will volunteer as there are girls that attend. Kuter said this can influence the visiting girls by showing how many female college students are pursing majors in STEM fields.“These middle schoolers really do get to see a lot of examples of the possibilities and what the potential is with these undergraduate Saint Mary’s students,” Kuter said.Part of Hypatia Day’s goal is to reach out to girls in this age group to keep them from dropping their interest in the sciences, and Kuter said the impact of the day should keep these girls interested in science.“Research has shown that that is the age when girls start pulling away from the STEM fields,” Kuter said. “That transition is key in order to keep women engaged within the STEM fields.”Kloepper said Saint Mary’s, as an all-women’s college, facilitates a connection between its students and young girls interested in the sciences through events like Hypatia Day.“It’s nice that we have this opportunity to reach out to them and kind of say, ‘No, stick with it, it’s an amazing career path,’” Kloepper said.Booth said she personally felt this impact when she was in middle school.“I felt I was very English-y and liked writing, and I wasn’t really interested in sciences because I thought that was something only boys did,” Booth said. “So I think it’s important to inspire them and show them that it’s something they can do too.”Tags: Hypatia Day, science, STEMlast_img read more

Carpe Beer

first_imgThe other day I spent 20 minutes in the car behind two big tractor-trailers carrying brand new brewing tanks to New Belgium that’s being built in Asheville. It’s the only time I’ve ever been excited to sit in traffic. It’s difficult to express my feelings about New Belgium’s impending brewery. Giddy, excited, emotionally erect…all of these words are accurate, but they don’t do my feelings justice.And it’s not just New Belgium that I’m excited about. Catawba Brewing just opened a swanky new taproom in downtown Asheville. Wicked Weed started building their production facility on the outskirts of town. Sierra Nevada just opened their taproom and restaurant, which, by all accounts, is plated entirely in gold and everlasting rose pedals.Craft beer is booming all over the country, but there’s so much happening in Asheville, North Carolina on a variety of different scales, that it’s easy to think we’re living at Ground Zero during the Golden Age of Craft Beer. I can walk out my door and hit a dozen breweries within two miles. If you find yourself in Asheville, you can paddle a mellow stretch of the French Broad and hit half a dozen different breweries, big and small. You can mountain bike directly to the door of one brewery, on Pisgah singletrack.We’re so fortunate to be alive now and living here. It’s complete happenstance that I’ve found myself in this town, during this beautiful time in history, when craft breweries are sprouting around me like weeds. Personally, I’ve done nothing to deserve this embarrassment of riches, but I’m going to do my best to enjoy it while it lasts. As they say, all good things must come to an end. In this case, I’m not sure if they’re talking about the craft beer boom or my liver. Either way, carpe beer.last_img read more

Wisconsin slides to 1-8 in Big Ten

first_imgWEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Having fought a nasty streak of roster-plaguing injuries, numerous close matches falling into the hands of opponents and a schedule that has made hotel rooms the weekend norm, the Wisconsin women’s tennis team had braved seemingly every element possible going into its matches against Purdue and Illinois this Saturday and Sunday.But after suffering a duo of losses over the weekend, mother nature saw clear to adding insult to injury for the embattled squad, grounding its bus in Champaign, Ill., while tornado alerts and stormy weather claimed control of the Midwestern town. The storm started building up Sunday afternoon while the Badgers were on the singles court against the Illini, peaking only after the completion of play.”At first it was very humid — it was very deceiving,” junior Kaylan Caiati said. “It actually was pretty hot considering it was pretty dark and windy.”And as the Badgers fell 4-3 to the Illini on the heels of a 7-0 loss to Purdue Saturday, that storm front almost certainly made an impact on the court.”In my singles match, serving, I tossed it up and hit the ball completely behind my head because the wind pushed it back,” Caiati recalled. “It is a finesse game, not a power game, when the wind is that much of a factor.”Though Caiati fell short to Macall Harkins, 7-5, 6-0, in singles play, she and UW freshman Elizabeth Carpenter pulled off an upset 8-1 victory over the Illini’s No. 41 tandem of Harkins and Emily Wang in doubles play earlier Sunday, helping the Badgers earn the day’s first point. “In doubles, I was very happy with how I played and how Liz played. I think we kept our focus,” Caiati said. “We started off very strong … and we just kept that momentum throughout the entire match.”Wisconsin’s other two points on the day came by way of singles victories from Carpenter and Chelsea Nusslock, defeating Wang and Momei Qu 6-2, 7-5 and 6-3, 6-2, respectively. “It felt really good to win [Sunday] after a few losses,” Nusslock said. “We all really wanted to show something for ourselves, to do well … after the 7-0 loss, we wanted to redeem ourselves.”And that 7-0 loss here Saturday certainly did mark a point of difficulty for the squad, as only one Badger managed to claim more than three games in a set during singles player, with sophomore Morgan Tuttle eventually dropping to the Boilermakers’ Anna Dzeva 6-4, 7-6(1) in the day’s closest — and longest — match. “Hats off to Purdue, because what they did do — and what Purdue has done — and they did it the best that I have ever seen a Purdue tennis team do, is that they were as cohesive as they ever have been, they were behind each other, and they individually imposed their games on us,” head coach Patti Henderson said after play Saturday.last_img read more

Marathonbet nets Man City upgrade to become training kit sponsor

first_imgShare StumbleUpon SBC Awards: The key to an effective submission August 28, 2020 Top 50 clubs suffer €751m decline in brand value July 31, 2020 Marathonbet secures official partnership with Real Madrid November 28, 2019 Share Related Articles Submit Closing 2019, Marathonbet has announced its second major football partnership as the Panserve Ltd online sportsbook subsidiary expands its sponsorship agreement with Premier League champions Manchester City.Upgrading partnership terms, Marathonbet will serve as ‘training kit partner’ of ‘The Citizens’, with the European sportsbook brand appearing on the training shirts for both Manchester City senior men and women’s teams.Expanding its English football profile, Marathonbet has served as ‘Global Betting Partner’ of Manchester City since June 2018.Manchester City unveiled its new training kit at a press event attended by manager Pep Guardiola and City players Sergio Agüero, Bernardo Silva, Gemma Bonner and Megan Campbell.Adhering to safer gambling responsibilities, Marathonbet confirms that junior and academy jerseys will showcase the ‘City Football Foundation’ logo.Omar Berrada, Chief Operating Officer at Manchester City, said: “Launching our first training kit partner is a significant moment and we’re delighted to be doing this with our existing partner, Marathonbet.“The last 18 months of partnership have been positive for us both. We are pleased to recognise this success by expanding our relationship together.”Natalia Zavodnik, Marathonbet CEO, said: “It’s been a pleasure to be alongside Manchester City as its official betting partner, for one of the most exciting chapters in the club’s history.“We have been offering fans around the world to benefit from our unique giveaways, competitions and once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. We are delighted to be strengthening our partnership today by becoming the club’s first-ever training kit partner.”last_img read more

SuperData report suggests esports revenue to reach $2.3 billion in 2022

first_imgResearch company SuperData has published its latest report with more interesting findings around the esports industry. The 14 page PDF covers topics from revenue, through to YouTube and Twitch as well as different game titles and trends.The report suggests that revenue has hit $1.5 billion (£1.13bn) in 2017 and growth will continue, hitting 26% growth by 2020. SuperData suggests the growth will be fuelled by third-party investments into the space as well as viewership, projected to grow at 12% each year. Furthermore, the report suggests the recent franchising in Overwatch and League of Legends will contribute significantly to the growth by selling around the new leagues.  Credit: SuperData Research, Esports Courtside Playmakers of 2017Interestingly, the SuperData report outlines that a staggering 85% of the previously outlined $1.5 billion was contributed by investments and sponsorship/advertisers. Merchandise and ticket sales sit at 5%, with prize pools at 6%. The one that sticks out is betting and amateur tournaments sitting at just 5% of total contributions. It’s not been noted as to how the number is calculated, but given previous estimates of the handle in both the illegal skin betting market and increase in popularity of regulated operators, we would have thought it would be higher. The report continues to outline League of Legends continued superiority over Dota 2 in terms of viewership, whilst the latter has a significantly higher prize pool element. It then goes to outline the opportunity the Overwatch League presents before moving onto PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. SuperData suggest that “PUBG is on its way to becoming the first Battle Royale” esport. It states that the game has surpassed 200 million unique viewers in just seven months, and is already closing on League of Legends. Furthermore, it suggests that the viewership is 20 times larger than the player base – suggesting viewers who do not just play the game. We would suggest that the viewership is largely fuelled by the most popular streamers in the world drawing 100,000+ each evening, with the likes of Dr Disrespect and Shroud consistently propelling the title towards the top. The esports tournaments have drawn big crowds, but it’s still a very infant scene that has a lot of issues to iron out. The final point of the report analyses the fight for esports viewership between Twitch and YouTube. It suggests that over two thirds (67%) will watch both, with only 20% watching Twitch only and 11% watching YouTube only. The split between esports viewers per platform is a weird one and arguably a transitional phase as YouTube becomes more involved in the scene. Twitch has been the mainstay for esports for a while so habits of more casual consumers may mean they do not notice esports action elsewhere and that could help explain the figures. Still, as shown by ESL Pro League this weekend, when there’s good esports action on – no matter the platform – fans will flock to view it.Esports Insider says: Some interesting figures from Superdata’s latest report, although we’re not overly surprised by most of them. The PUBG figures remain intriguing but we would argue they’re not strictly esports numbers just yet. We can all accept however, that it has been a great year for esports.last_img read more