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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Lavender graduation’ to celebrate LGBT graduates

 
 

This year Texas A&M’s GLBT Resource Center will host its inaugural “Lavender Graduation,” a ceremony spotlighting LGBT Aggies for their accomplishments as they
celebrate graduations.
The event will feature speaker Phyllis Frye, the first transgender judge in Texas. Sidney Gardner, GLBT Resource Center program coordinator, said she hoped to implement the event at A&M since she started here over a year ago.
“I just think that we have so few places that we get to celebrate the accomplishment of our students,” Gardner said. “And particularly where our students are able to bring their whole selves to
the table.”
Megan Caldwell, GLBT resource center graduate assistant and public health graduate student, said the event is separate from annual commencement ceremonies in that it is more of a celebration than a
graduation ceremony.
Lavender Graduation will be open to all LGBT students who are graduating and their family and friends. Caldwell said that allies and all other interested students are also welcome.
Caldwell said the resource center is excited to be celebrating the LGBT degree recipients in a ceremony just for them, and even announced that many LGBT graduates will be wearing rainbow tassels as they walk the stage
in May.
Lavender Graduation allows graduating LGBT students to celebrate leadership roles and participation in clubs or events that are not recognized in the traditional graduation, Caldwell said.
“It’s a place for GLBT students to celebrate their accomplishments here on campus and celebrate their graduation in a friendly environment and to also recognize their achievements that wouldn’t be normally a part of the traditional graduation,” Caldwell said. “This is in addition to regular graduation. These students will maybe be talking about their involvement in the GLBT student organizations or scholarships they’ve gotten or other contributions to the community.”
Caldwell said the idea for a Lavender Graduation at A&M came from other schools in Texas that hold the event.
“Lavender has had a history of being associated with the GLBT community,” Caldwell said. “The early feminist movement called lesbians the ‘lavender menace’ so it’s kind of been one of the colors that symbolize the community.”
Gardner said she hopes this premiere Lavender Graduation has a good turnout and that students look at the ceremony as a way to feel comfortable with themselves as they prepare for the next chapter of their life.
Angela Ghazizadeh, senior political science major, said Lavender Graduation is a way for students to celebrate while getting to be themselves.
“It is an opportunity for people who identify as LGBTQ or heterosexual – as it’s a ceremony letting them celebrate their time and achievements at Texas A&M,” Ghazizadeh said. “They get to be around people that support them and it’s a moment for them to cherish their memories as queer Aggies or allies.”
The date for signing up to walk the stage in Lavender Graduation closes Friday, but registration for attending the event doesn’t close until April 7. The event will be held at 7 p.m. April 16 in the MSC Gates Ballroom.

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