A Rutgers University study determined that “A little over one in five queer-spectrum students (22 percent) and one in four trans-spectrum students (25 percent) report that they had seriously considered suicide during the previous 12 months – three times the rate of heterosexual (8 percent) and non-transgender peers (9 percent).”
Southeastern Louisiana University hosts a Safe Space Training for faculty/staff, students, and others who would like to be safe space certified. It is offered once every spring and fall semester to show support and create an environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer/questioning (LGBTQ) students.
“As a friend and supporter of the community, I think it is great that Southeastern is hosting this type of event annually, but I think it should be more than an event…[Somebody] should implement it more into the college where students can understand the experiences, challenges, and the common terminology,” Kristin Newman said. Newman is a junior English Major at SELU.
With the current state of environmental stressors and ongoing world events, college students’ mental health issues are bound to rise. The university continues to have classes held with options that are conducive to students. But that doesn’t lessen the stress or burden of depression or suicidal thoughts in the collegiate LGBTQ community. “The misuse of terminology or misgendering is still a prevalent issue on and off-campus,” Ashleigh Gaines said. Ashleigh is a graduate student pursuing a Master’s in Psychology.
Stephanie Mourra, a junior communications major, feels that Southeastern should offer safe space training on Moodle in its section/tab or through some program that allows students, faculty, and staff to feel comfortable in their own home and have that constant resource available at all times. “This training is valuable and priceless, it can be used on the job, at home, in school, or a quick read at the coffee shop,” Mourra said.