Budget problems? What budget problems? University of Alaska Anchorage opens new Pride Center on campus

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The University of Alaska Anchorage has announced its new Pride Center has opened its doors last week. Located in the University Hub on the ground floor of the Student Union, the Pride Center provides programs, services and events for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, asexual and two-spirit members of the UAA community. 

Although the budget for the center wasn’t advertised, the Pride Center at least has a staff member, UAA alum Jessi Saiki, who currently serves as one of the engagement and belonging coordinators in Multicultural Student Services, focused on leading Rainbow Initiatives.

Two years ago the university cut bachelor’s degree programs in sociology, hospitality administration, theater, environment and society, as well as master’s degree programs in early childhood special education, and creative writing. The dance minor program was cut. UAA also cut the hockey program, but reinstated it after a fundraising campaign raised more than $3 million for the program.

“Perhaps most importantly, the Pride Center is a visible space for all members of the UAA community to explore gender identity and sexual orientation in a non-judgmental atmosphere,” the University reported.

“When students find a sense of belonging and feel safe, they’re more likely to stay and finish school,” said Sara Caldwell-Kan, director of Multicultural Student Services. “So having this space matters because it will help keep students succeeding. But more than the space, it’s about demonstrating a commitment to queer and trans students. Even if students don’t ever go there, that visibility really does matter when it comes to building trust in the institution.”

“Before the Pride Center, MSS — whose mission is to support all people with marginalized identities — emerged as the de facto LGBTQ space on campus. To make this support more apparent, MSS introduced Rainbow Initiatives as an umbrella for MSS’s LGBTQ-centric efforts. Rainbow Initiatives will now fall under the Pride Center,” the university said.

Work on the Pride Center began in summer 2021 as one of two initiatives recommended by the LGBTQIA2S+ Advisory Committee. Similar to how Rainbow Initiatives sprung from MSS, the advisory committee originated as part of the Campus Climate Committee until the need for a group to focus more specifically on LGBTQ isses became evident, the university continued.

The advisory committee is working on its second recommended initiative: introducing inclusive bathrooms on campus.

“From researching to putting together a proposal and finally opening the space, the time frame we were able to open the Pride Center in really shows that UAA is committed to making inclusive spaces,” said Kim Morton, executive director of student engagement and inclusion. “And with inclusive restrooms, we’ll keep making sure we’re doing everything we can to keep the students that we have and for them to have very positive experiences on campus.”

32 COMMENTS

  1. I will never understand this bizarre use of the word “pride” in conjunction with being gay.
    .
    If homosexuality is merely an accident and a product of birth, as those most politically militant about it insist, then what is there to be ‘proud’ about? If one inherits a particular nature or trait, I fail to see how one can be proud about it. I mean, real pride comes from accomplishments, from achievements, from striving and working hard and reaching a goal. How is being gay an achievement?
    .
    Should I be proud that I am Caucasian, for example, and have blue eyes and brown hair — and more than that, militantly throw those facts into the faces of everyone else at every opportunity?

    • It is not about acceptance. It is about power and control.
      If they just said gays are that way, deal with it, it would be a plea for acceptance. Pride month/pride flags/pride centers, etc… are all about telling everyone else that if they do not celebrate gays, they will suffer the consequences. Celebrate they way we demand you celebrate, or else.

      • I guess I had not thought of all this conspicuous and militant gayness in those terms, CMBTTek. But you are almost certainly correct, and it all has gone FAR beyond merely seeking tolerance.

        • Jefferson:
          This is Mother Nature’s defense mechanism to make sure that enough homosexuals stay populated. The planet cannot sustain 8 billion people at the current rate of resource usage. Homosexuality = non-procreation. This is Mother Nature’s design to try and put the planet back into equilibrium.
          In otherwords, homosexuality has an end point.

          • It is also why they feel the compulsion to groom children into the lifestyle. They cannot pass their genes down…

  2. Distance learning used to have some serious drawbacks; set your TV to channel ‘X’ and hope the grainy picture conveys enough. More recently the internet learning experience has become fuller and richer. A layer of students have opted for an online degree from a school w/ a more stable accreditation and more will follow.

    Will any of them miss being around the flaming Mad Myrna types in a teaching environment?

    Is there a section of the school roped off for the ostentatiously heterosexual? How about a BDSM section? A golden shower pavilion w/ a linoleum floor somewhere close to a water fountain? No doubt there’s plenty of learning in that little life experience.

  3. Gotta have your priorities. For todays progressives, that means promoting gayness.

    It’s not like they know how to educate anymore, so they need to spend our money somehow.

  4. If Dunleavy had a pair like that of DeSantis’, this would be shut down tomorrow. Dunleavy and DeSantis’ similarity ends with they are in the same party and their family name starts with ‘D’. They might as well as be from two different planets altogether.

  5. Isn’t the University of Alaska a land grant university system? Why do they continue to get funded to the tune of 15%-20% of the general state appropriations budget in order to build such garbage? Isn’t that discretionary funding? If we ever managed to wrest control of the budget from the drunken sailors of the Uniparty Coalition again, how about “proudly” slashing the appropriations, and telling the UA leadership to start managing their lands like they need it.

  6. No state or federal funds should ever be used for a sexist anti heterosexual facility such as this. I mean if someone wants to build it, use their own donations and all that. You ever notice that UAA and ASD cry poor all the time but they get these really nice facilities that are run largely by inept staff with degrees from where ?????? UAA you got it. UAA is a self licking lollypop of liberal thinking. They have never found a niche or pot of money they won’t suckle from

    • Very true and they have large slush funds. Like I keep saying the government organizations and departments are nothing but liars and thieves. They always want more money and are always crying about not enough money. Look at this mess America is in and that’s a big part of less new children being born. I wouldn’t have kids with todays world and the full court press to change the way we live.

  7. Taxation without representation is what this appears to be. The States funds alloted to the Universities belong to the Citizens of Alaska. When will the people wake up and realize we are being governed by our employees?

  8. It is a luxury of a wealthy country/state/organization to care about Diversity/Inclusion/Equity (DIE).
    When that country/state/organization places DIE above maintaining that wealth, they will lose both.

  9. Oneday, don’t worry-m let them party while there’s a campus, UA campus’ will close transferring its remaining students to University of Washington because of low enrollment and lacking much alumi monetary giving. UA is bigger than sheldon jackson college from sitka but it will fall, unless it returns to its glory days being a 2-year community college teaching basics and trades.

  10. As far as the Bolshevist Operation Gaylord goes, I take comfort in the unavoidable fact that ‘Pride comes before the fall’, and they have set it up themselves. Easy enough to focus on other things because its not if it will all come undone, its just a matter of when…

  11. “…engagement and belonging coordinator….”

    Looks like they created a job for a gender studies graduate. I wonder what [insert pronoun here] actually does all day, and how is that person’s work evaluated, and by whom?

  12. Suzanne’s doing a lot of editorializing here, pushing her own narrative, and comparing Apples to Pomegranates!
    If the Pride Center is in the University Hub of the Student Union, it’s a *Student Fee* funded program. It in no way has anything to do with the university’s funding of academic programs.
    (Student Fee funded programs are managed by the Associated Students student government!)

    • Mandatory student fees are charged to students based on credit load (how many credits they are taking). If you can’t attend school w/out paying the fee then it’s a tuition cost and no part of tuition should be used to underwrite an on campus homosexual hook up program.

  13. They’re everywhere! Not to sound derisive–I didn’t realize Alaska was crawling with so many of “them.” I bet that “they” refer among “themselves” to the Pride Center as the “Closet.” The term certainly has a poetic twist to it that nobody can deny!

  14. If ASD fails in their mission to groom the children and take them down the path of self mutilation then this is an excellent opportunity for UAA to catch them and complete the dirty deeds before they venture out in the world to think for themselves.
    Young children and puberty stage youth dont always have the guidance they need due to both parents struggling with work just to maintain a family home. And there are also single parent homes with only one parent. How can a father properly guide his daughter through the crucial stage of becoming a woman? The same goes for a single Mom trying to raise a son. All children become “at risk” at some point of development for many reasons. That is why it is so easy for ASD/UAA to take advantage of easy prey. If we dont wake up as a community and take action against this cancer within our state we will be no different than San Fransicko where taxpayers are paying people to be queer and homeless. If you sign up for the free money you get $1200/month cash just for being a homeless transgender person.This will all happen very soon within a generation of time. Once we reach that level of social sickness can you imagine what it would take to turn it around??? Not gonna happen! We must stand together as parents/grand parents/neighborhoods/community counsels and demand accountability by removing as many children possible through home schooling private schools christian schools or whatever it takes to keep them out of public schools. That is the only way we will be able to receive child education credits to pay for an alternate to public schools who have empowered themselves using our tax dollars to destroy our own children. I met a teacher at Bayshore elementary who said she was using her entire entire salary to fund private education for her three children because there was no way she trusted ASD with her children! Not all teachers are at fault. It is the all mighty school board president and her cronies. Just listen to the overpaid unqualified punk they hired for a superintendant whenever he speaks… And the teachers are backed by the Mafia run Teachers union as well. A teacher cant even be fired for inappropriate conduct because of the big union lawyers defending them. They all must be defunded! This is our only chance of saving ourselves. Dont blame it on the governor. He did not create this mess. He of all people knows more about education than anyone in this state and we are lucky to have him as a governor.Just quit comparing him to Ron Desantis. Ron has true conservatives backing him. Our governor has only a handful of true conservatives and a herd of RINOs that chose to join the Lefties and transfer the majority they had. They are simply traitors! Democrats would never do that. Are you listening Mr KAUFMAN????

  15. I was always under the impression that a university was supposed to teach subject material.

    Seriously, why is a university involved in ANYTHING outside of the classes needed for the degrees given? Forget that the subject is homosexuality, change it to students that like quilting. The school wouldn’t give quilting students their own ‘Quilting Center’. And for good reason, as it has nothing to do with the classes/degrees given there. Now, if those students got together and rented their own Quilting Center, with their own funds, off campus, none of us would care less.

  16. What a shitty piece of….journalism ? You regurgitated a press release and added your own prejudice to the story. Once again, you got a basic fact wrong but you refuse to acknowledge or correct the error.

    Why do continue to do this kind of sleazy stuff, Sue ? It only makes you look bad, you know that, right ? Scoring internet points by harming the reputations and livelihoods of Anchorage citizens is you jam, I get that. What motivates you to do this ? Is it the money ? You don’t live here, you have no roots in this community, yet you’re so arrogant to think that you should be telling us how to live. Stay in Florida, Sue, you are not a force for good, you’re a toxic liar and a vindictive person who makes our community a poorer place.

    BTW, How’s that spam filter working for you ?

    • “Once again, you got a basic fact wrong but you refuse to acknowledge or correct the error.”
      So… what basic fact?
      And, it is quite possible Suzanne does not realize the error. Instead of attacking, how about helping? Share your knowledge.

    • Stop talking in undefined phrases. Point out the press releases and the ‘added prejudice’. What basic facts are wrong here?
      UAA, a university that awards degrees, used money to open a pride center for gay students. This was not a center open for all students, just a targeted few. Fact. Now explain to all of us what a ‘pride center’ has to do with studies required for any degree awarded by UAA. I just don’t care if you are proud and gay any more than you care that I have red hair and an awesome mustache. If you feel that a ‘pride center’ is needed or wanted, go ahead and drum up the money and start one. But do it off campus and without tax money.

    • For gosh sake, Proud and Mentally Ill, nobody cared much about what you did in your closet as long as you stayed away from kids and you kept your nasty diseases to yourself but your insistence on being a public degenerate and your imagined belief that normal people should accept you, your disgusting behavior, and the rest of the unhinged freaks like you is utterly preposterous.

      You’re sick, Sonny, and just because you surround yourself with other loud sickos in no way makes you acceptably normal.

      Suzanne is doing a great public service and your ancestors were right.

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