LBGT@MIT | Newsletter


MARCH 2016


Dear LBGT@MIT Community,

Welcome to our new visual newsletter! In addition to our usual text-only digest, we're now distributing this digital version which includes full-color images and topical separation for your ease of reading and navigation. You can access our visual newsletter here. Please be kind as we learn and grow from any formatting inconsistencies with this new version.

March has some wonderful dates to remember, including Pi Day (3/14), St. Patrick's Day (3/17), and César Chavez Day (3/31). Let it not be lost on us that March is also dedicated to Women's History Month to honor the many contributions from which we benefit year round. Join us in learning more about key women in our communities influencing history herstory today, highlighted in the following section. Then, continue on to read about LBGT@MIT's upcoming programs throughout the month, followed by other events in the surrounding campus, Cambridge, and Boston areas. Several calls for involvement at the local and national level can be found in the "Opportunities" section thereafter as well!


TRL (Team Rainbow Lounge)


Rainbow Lounge 50-005
Walker Memorial Basement

Monday through Friday:


For details on events, opportunities, and more:

"Like" lbgt@MIT on Facebook!

Follow @lbgtMIT on Twitter!


Dr. Nergis Mavalvala, Ph.D., Professor of Astrophysics

"Albert Einstein predicted the existence of gravitational waves - ripples in spacetime - almost a century ago. But until recently there was no way to observe them. But thanks to the work of Dr. Nergis Mavalvala and her colleagues at MIT, Einstein's theory is now a proven phenomenon."

"Women are a rarity in the sciences - LGBT Pakistani women exceedingly so. But Mavalvala, 47, told Science magazine, 'I don't mind being on the fringes of any social group.'"

"The self-described 'out queer person of color' and mom... says being an outsider, 'you are less constrained by the rules.'"

Source: NewNowNext

Jennicet Gutierrez, Founding Member of Familia TQLM (Trans Queer Liberation Movement)

"In immigration reform when the mainstream politicians are trying to work something out, they try to differentiate between good vs. bad immigrants. The #Not1More campaign was appealing to me because we don't differentiate. Everyone deserves an opportunity.... We're dealing with deportations from families and we have trans women in detention who are facing abuse and harassment. It's hard not to have a critical discussion."

"I was fortunate to be invited to the White House to listen to President Obama's speech recognizing the LGBTQ community and the progress being made. But while he spoke of 'trans women of color being targeted,' his administration holds LGBTQ and trans immigrants in detention. I spoke out because our issues and struggles can no longer be ignored."

Sources: Washington Blade and SkirtCollective

Anayvette Martinez and Marilyn Hollinquest, Co-Founders of the Radical Monarchs

"'...[M]y 4th grade daughter desperately wanted to join a young girl's troop. As she was blooming into a young girl of color, I watched her begin to navigate her identity and growth. I saw the need for a group that would empower and encourage her to form bonds of sisterhood with other girls in her community. I began to imagine what a radical young girl's social justice troop looked like; a group that centered and affirmed her experiences as a beautiful and brilliant brown girl against so many societal pressures to conform to mainstream ideals of girlhood. I shared this idea with her and she lit up with excitement. I knew, however, that I could not possibly do this alone so I called on Marilyn, a close friend and chosen sister, who I knew would be a fantastic co-founder. She accepted this challenge and together we formed a dynamic Scorpio duo to launch the Radical Monarchs [formerly known as the Radical Brownies]!'
- Anayvette Martinez, Co-founder"

Source: Facebook

Channing Dungey, President of ABC Entertainment Group

"Channing Dungey has been named president of ABC Entertainment Group, the network announced Wednesday. Dungey is the first black person to lead a major broadcast network…"

"'Channing is a gifted leader and a proven magnet for top creative talent, with an impressive record of developing compelling, breakthrough programming that resonates with viewers,' Disney-ABC Television Group chairman Ben Sherwood said in a statement."

Source: HuffPost


Work in the Rainbow Lounge!
By utilizing their leadership, sensitivity, and skills in community building, event planning, peer counseling, crisis intervention, and communication, staff members play a key role in fulfilling the missions of the Rainbow Lounge. LBGT@MIT strives to serve our diverse communities; provide educational, social, and cultural activities; and provide a "home away from home" for traditionally underrepresented students. Click here for more information, and e-mail Julio Oyola ( if you'd like to be considered for this position.

Lazos: Community Meals for Trans & Queer People of Color (TQPOC)
WED March 2 from 12:00-14:00/12:00P-2:00P
WED March 16 from 16:00-18:00/4:00P-6:00P
Rainbow Lounge (50-005)
Lazo is one of several Spanish terms for "bow", referencing the latter half of "rainbow" as well as the identities and experiences that tie us together within and across our communities. Come along or bring a friend for a low-key meal on us with other self-identified trans and queer people of color across MIT's campus. Let's join in togetherness, support, and community with each other and all our TQPOC siblings for success at the Institute and beyond.

Asexuality 101
THU March 3
Coffeehouse (W20-308)
What is asexuality? Are you asexual? What can you do to support people who identify as asexual? Come explore with a panel sponsored by LBGT@MIT.

Queer Career Meet Up
THU March 3
Bush Room (10-105)
This is a casual and informational event exclusively for the LBGTQ community to gain experience networking with professionals and learn a little about employers. We will discuss each companies' LBGTQ-related policies and procedures, benefits, and LBGTQ resource groups for employees. You will have the opportunity to meet employers throughout the evening along with other students. Participants will be Accenture, Akamai, McKinsey, and more. Light refreshments will be served. ***Advanced registration requested. RSVP to by 5pm on Wednesday, March 2nd.

LBGTQ Issues Group
TUE March 8
Rainbow Lounge (50-005)
The LBGT Issues Group is a committee of faculty, staff, students, and alumni(ae) who are lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender, or just plain friendly seeking to foster a safe and welcoming environment for LBGT students and to ensure that the educational mission of MIT is upheld for all students regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Meetings are once a month and address specific projects dealing with the concerns of the LBGTQ community. Anyone affiliated with MIT and LBGTQ-friendly is welcome to join and to participate.

Family Dinners
THU March 10 & 31
Rainbow Lounge (50-005)
We're hosting a dinner event for the LBGTQ and Ally community called 'Family Dinner' (a reclaiming of several terms i.e., framily, the family, we are family, etc.) This event will take place twice a month on Tuesday evenings. All MIT affiliates are welcome.

Game Night: The After Party
THU March 10 & 31
Rainbow Lounge (50-005)
Please join us for bi-weekly game nights on Thursdays from 7PM to 9PM! We will have board games and card games, and you can even bring your favorites! It's open to the entire MIT community, and feel free to bring a friend. Join us at our Family Dinners starting at 6PM, or just come for the games!

Cookies and Conversation with Girls Who Kiss Girls (GWKG)
FRI March 4, 11, and 18
Rainbow Lounge (50-005)
A student run group, GWKG hosts Cookies and Conversation every Friday. Enjoy scrumptious cookies and good company to finish off the week with some well-deserved relaxation and fun. Feel free to add yourself to the mailing list or email about questions.


Lazos: Community Meals for Trans and Queer People of Color (TQPOC)
Lazos is now happening twice per month! Come stop by every first and third Wednesday to share our all-day breakfast menu for lunch or later with other TQPOC folx on campus.

  • Later Lazos (16:00-18:00/4:00P-6:00P): March 16, April 19, May 18
  • Lunch Lazos (12:00-14:00/12:00P-2:00P): March 2, April 6, May 4

Family Dinners and Game Nights!
Family Dinners will also be happening every other week that school is in session this semester, immediately followed by our bi-weekly Game Nights!

  • March 10 and 31
  • April 14 and 28
  • May 12

Campus Preview Weekend - CPW!!!
Please join us to celebrate and welcome potential new students into the LBGT and LBGT-Ally community at MIT.

  • April 8: Rainbow Lounge Open House
  • April 9: LBGT Family & Friends Brunch

Lavender Graduation
On Friday, May 13, we will be hold a reception to honor graduate and undergraduate LBGT students who have (almost) made it through MIT successfully! We also celebrate the accomplishments of the past year. If you or someone you know identifies with the LBGT community and is graduating, please e-mail us at so we can be sure they get invited.


Gay & Catholic
FRI March 4
W51 (Burton Conner) Porter Room
Join us for "Gay & Catholic: Accepting my Sexuality, Finding Community, and Living my Faith" a talk by Eve Tushnet. Dinner will be served. For more info on the author, click here.

Black Women's Week
SUN March 6 - SAT March 12
You are cordially invited to Black Women's Week 2016, an endeavor to strengthen community, encourage health and wellness, and celebrate inspirational Black Women throughout the Institute's history. This year, Black Women's Week is taking place Sunday, March 6th - Saturday, March 12th, and we have had the pleasure of teaming up with My Sister's Keeper, the Black Graduate Student Association, Violence, Prevention & Response, and Chocolate City to plan some phenomenal events. In addition, our Annual Banquet will include special appearances by Black Women's Alliance's founding members Ticora Jones and Danielle Hinton. The week's lineup of events is as follows:

  • "My Sister's Keeper" Kickoff Brunch
    SUN 12:30-14:00/12:30P-2:00P
    McCormick Hall Country Kitchen

  • Get Fit with BWA
    MON 18:30-19:30/6:30P-7:30P
    Zesiger Center, MacG Court

  • A BGSA-sponsored Trailblazer Dinner with Dr. Monique Morris
    TUE 17:00/5:00P
    BGSA Lounge

  • Treat Yo-Self Study Break
    WED 20:00-21:00/8:00P-9:00P
    McCormick East Penthouse

  • Dinner with Violence, Prevention & Response (VPR)
    THU 19:30-21:00/7:30P-9:00P
    BSU Lounge

  • Chocolate City's Celebration of Black Women
    FRI 17:00-18:00/5:00P-6:00P
    Chocolate City, 3rd Floor, New House

  • The Annual Banquet
    SAT 20:00-21:00/8:00P-9:00P
    Mezzanine Lounge, Student Center

Random Acts of Kindness (RAK) Week
MON March 28 through FRI April 1
It's a time for the members of the MIT community (undergrads, grads, faculty, staff, alumni, custodians, associates, etc.) to connect through Random Acts of Kindness (RAK). We hope these little acts of kindness will remind people that they are not invisible. We mainly want to make everyone's day a little brighter during one of the toughest times of the academic year. Each day comes with an overarching theme:

  • Monday: Introduction to RAK Week. Introduce 20 challenges during RAK Week. Use wooden clothing pins with kind words on them and clip them to people. Bubble guns.
  • Tuesday: Peer-to-Peer resources in Lobby 10. Carnations passed out.
  • Wednesday: Institutional resources in Lobby 10 and goody bags with card of resources passed out.
  • Thursday: Miscellaneous acts of kindness. Use #MITRAK to tag act of kindness seen
  • Friday: Let's Talk About It Open Mic Event (3rd Floor Media Lab). The open mic night will be on the last day of RAK Week (4/1/16). We want it to be a time for members of the community to come together and share their stories, give advice, rant, read poems, etc.
Other things going on during the week: Handing out "spread <3" wristbands, colored pencils, getting therapy dogs for two days, sending notes, sending serenades, publicity, RAK HACKS.If anyone has questions, they can either directly email me at or email the RAK committee at Hopefully, through these small changes, we will be able to catalyze a larger change on campus.


"Beyond Marriage Equality: Rainbows at the Crossroads"
3rd Annual Conference at Harvard University
SAT March 5
Harvard Law School, Austin Hall, 1515 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge
The Conference serves as an annual platform to bring together the diverse voices of the LGBTQ community and its allies. Through an engaging lineup of speakers, panelists, and social events, we aim to highlight the intersectionalities within the LGBTQ. Topics to be discussed include LGBTQ youth and education, homelessness, criminal justice, trans* representation in the media, transgender military service, faith and religious communities, ally engagement, non-gender binary identities, global LGBTQ rights, and more... Visit to register today.

"The T Party" by Natsu Onoda Power
SAT March 5
254 Commnwealth Ave #3, Boston, MA
The T Party is a non-traditionally structured theatre piece that explores a range of gender identity and experience through short scenes, performance pieces, and an interactive party. The piece blends the stories of real people into a celebration of gender expression, and invites the audience to engage with the show directly -- a central part of the piece is a prom that everyone is can join in on! If you're able to attend, please fill out this brief RSVP form before Tuesday, March 1st: (General Admission: $15)

"Her Story" Screening
WED March 16
Barnum Hall, Tufts University
One of the Tufts entries for the Graduate Consortium in Women's Studies Women Take the Reel series in March. We are co-sponsoring a screening of a new web series called Her Story about the dating lives of queer and trans women. Two of the shows stars, Angelica Ross and Laura Zak, will join us for the screening and a conversation about the show's themes on Wednesday, March 16th at 7 pm. (No cost)

"The Same Difference" Film Screening
THU March 17
Landmark Kendall Square Cinema
Hosted by Boston Black Pride, Nneka Onuorah's fascinating documentary examines what happens when African-American lesbians discriminate against each other over violations of the strict code that separates butches from femmes. Onuorah breaks down the rules (no long hair, makeup, getting pregnant) then talks to women who've been on the receiving end of hate for crossing these lines. Onuorah shows how these behaviors reproduce the homophobic oppression of the straight world, while looking for solutions in compelling discussions with community members. Support our fellow artist and reserve your tickets here. (General admission: $15.00)

"Tangerine" Film Screening with Mya Taylor
THU March 17
Bright Family Screening Room, Emerson College
It's Christmas Eve in Tinseltown and Sin-Dee is back on the block. Upon hearing that her pimp boyfriend hasn't been faithful during the 28 days she was locked up, the sex worker and her best friend, Alexandra, embark on a mission to get to the bottom of the scandalous rumor. Their rip-roaring odyssey leads them through various subcultures of Los Angeles. Discussion with actress Mya Taylor to follow. Co-sponsored by EAGLE as part of Queer Spring and the Boston LGBT film festival. Mya Taylor is the first trans actress to win a major acting award:

Speed Mentoring for Students (Microsoft)
MON March 28
1 Memorial Drive (Microsoft NERD Building)
Join Microsoft New England R&D (NERD) Women, Blacks & Africans and LGBTQ groups for an evening of Networking and Mentoring. Come meet other students and join discussions about coding resources/competitions, Program Manager/Software engineer/Data Science roles at Microsoft, minorities in tech, resume/interview prep, and any other questions you may have. RSVP by March 18 at (80 tickets are available and will go quickly!)


Orientation Leader Deadline Extended
OL Application deadline has been extended to Friday, March 4. Application information can be found here. If you have any questions, contact Meghan Kenney at

Interviewing Grad Students
I am writing an article (or a series of articles, depending on how the first one goes) for the Tech about grad students of color and/or from under represented backgrounds (first get, low income, disabled, etc) and would love to interview some trans and/or queer students! I am focusing on people's paths to MIT, how their race/ethnicity/other "minority" status impacts them at MIT, and other questions along those lines. People could certainly be in the articles without discussing their LGBTQ+ identity. Please email Gabi at if you are interested!

New Student Group MG@MIT
"Man Up," "Be A Man," "Men Don't Cry," "Boys Will Be Boys..." These statements and more seek to define and restrict social expressions of masculinity in the world today. How do these expectations affect us individually? What about the larger MIT community? How can we challenge or break free from these expectations? The Men's Group at MIT (MG@MIT) seeks to explore these issues and more. The mission of MG@MIT is to analyze and find meaning in diverse narratives of masculinities @ MIT. We additionally seek to encourage authentic and transformative exploration of one's own masculine identity, in the pursuit of a more inclusive and respectful community. If you are interested in participating in this group or know of someone who might be (the group is open to anyone who identifies as male), please contact Duane de Four ( or Jacob Oppenheimer (

John S. W. Kellett Award
Deadline: March 14 at 5:00P
The John S. W. Kellett '47 Award recognizes any MIT individual or group for an exceptional and/or sustained commitment to creating a more welcoming environment at MIT, including but not limited to, improving the experience of lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender, and queer (LBGTQ), and questioning individuals. The award honors Mr. Kellett, whose spirited support has enabled significant improvements in the lives of members of MIT's LBGTQ community. Here's how:

  1. READ the award descriptions at
  2. WRITE a nomination letter (doesn't need to be a thesis)
  3. SEND to on or before March 14th, 2016 at 5pm
  4. ATTEND the Convocation on Thursday, May 10 at 4 p.m. in 10-250 followed by free food in Lobby 10!

The Tenth Annual TRANSforming Gender Conference
The University of Colorado-Boulder's TRANSforming Gender Conference is celebrating its Tenth year! The Conference hosts national and local transgender, genderqueer, intersex, Two-Spirit activists and scholars to raise awareness of how we can celebrate the diversity of gender and sex. This year's conference will feature the following keynotes: CeCe McDonald, Jennicet Gutierrez, Tiq and Kim Milan. The Conference is free and open to the public! We will be asking you to register at a later date. In addition to nationally recognized speakers, we are excited to be including workshops and panels throughout the conference. Previous presenters and participants have included academics, health professionals, community organizers, performance and visual artists, students, faculty, staff, youth, family members, community members, and other interested folks.

Summer Venture in Management Program (SVMP)
SVMP is a one-week management training program sponsored by Harvard Business School for rising college seniors (who have completed their junior year of college by June 2016) designed to increase diversity and opportunity in business education. Participants spend a week on campus living the MBA student experience – attending classes, analyzing case studies, and debating management issues with peers and faculty. Targeted participants are members of groups typically underrepresented in business schools and corporate America (e.g., African American, Latino, Native American, LGBT, first generation college students, etc.). While HBS covers on-site expenses, the student and/or corporate sponsors typically cover other costs associated with participating in the program. You can learn more about SVMP by visiting the program's website,, and viewing this short video featuring recent participants: SVMP Participant Video. SVMP 2016 will take place from June 18 - June 24, 2016. The application deadline is Thursday, May 5, 2016 at 12pm EST

Massachusetts Commission on LGBTQ Youth Internship
Massachusetts Commission on LGBTQ Youth is looking for a part-time fellow or intern to support our policy and public affairs work. Key position components include: conducting background research on LGBTQ youth-related policies and data; drafting communication materials; preparing for and attending key meetings and community events; expanding the Commission's online presence; and supporting Commission staff. Strong candidates will have excellent written and verbal communication skills; the ability to work independently; a strong sense of detail; and the maturity to represent the Commission at policy and community events.A position stipend is available.

Seeking Queer College Reviews
My name is Jeff, and I am a first-year college student. When I was applying to college, I struggled with trying to find the right school for me. While there were a wide variety of resources to help me find a school that fit my academic needs, there weren't that many resources to help me find the school with the best queer/trans* support network for me. Rankings like Campus Pride and the Princeton Review were good starting places, but simple numerical rankings don't adequately portray the nuances of LGBTQIA+ support and resources at different colleges. That's why I'm reaching out to colleges like MIT -- I'm trying to gather reviews from queer/trans* college students so that prospective students will be able to find the right college for them. If you know anyone who would be willing to share their experiences with LGBTQIA+ life at MIT, please consider sharing this email with them. Email:

Help us stand united against anti-Muslim bigotry
In the wake of the tragedy in San Bernardino, we send our deepest condolences to the victims' friends and families. Sadly, some are using this tragedy to justify additional violence and the backlash has already begun. We call on you to ensure the safety of our Muslim, Arab, and South Asian neighbors who are facing another wave of scapegoating and intimidation, reminiscent of that against Japanese-Americans during American internment. Today, many American Muslims are headed to their local mosques to observe Friday prayers. We must look out for each other so that everyone feels safe visiting places of worship, heading to work, attending school, and running everyday errands. Please report incidents of Islamophobia to , call (415) 848-7714, or to our partners at CAIR.

Help Make Our Voices Heard!
Doctoral graduate student, Karen Bittner, at Iowa State University is conducting a study for her dissertation. This study examines sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, stressful events, and mental and physical health. Lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, asexuals, queer, and transgender people experience unique stressors. By learning more about these stressors and how they influence health, we can take steps towards improving the lives of LGBAT+ people and others. Although especially interested in recruiting LGBAT+ participants, anyone is welcome to participate! Participation in this research study is completely confidential. To participate in this survey, please visit This study is open to all individuals 18 years or older who have internet access and who are fluent in English. The study is conducted online and would take approximately 45-55 minutes to complete. This study is being conducted with the authorization of the Iowa State University Institutional Review Board (Study Approval #14-627; 515-294-4566; If you have any questions or concerns about the study, please contact me (Karen Bittner) at or 515-451-8503.

Summer Opportunity at Camp Aranu'tiq
Camp Aranu'tiq of Harbor Camps, a summer camp for transgender youth, is looking for kitchen staff for the upcoming summer. Contact Eric Knudsen, Associate Director of Operations, Harbor Camps at, to learn more and apply.

Queer Muslims of Boston
The Queer Muslims of Boston (QMOB) builds community for Queer Muslims in the Greater Boston area. We are inclusive of all individuals who identify as Muslim and LGBT, Queer, or Questioning. We are committed to increasing the visibility of Queer Muslims as a group, while respecting the need for privacy of individual members. Anyone who is interested in learning more about the group or joining may reach us through email at or through Facebook message on our public page at or through our website

Egalite is Publicis Groupe's business resource group that serves LGBTQIA-identifying employees and their allies. Égalité is committed to helping make Publicis Groupe an inclusive environment for everyone, no matter who they are. Diversity and inclusion in the workplace, especially in the communications industry, is integral to the success of our professional work. If you know of any students interested in a career in advertising, design, public relations or media - whether or not they study it in college - we would love for them to apply for our 2016 Summer Internship Program. This internship will be a paid, 10-week program, and interested juniors and seniors are encouraged to fill out the attached application. We are hiring for positions in NYC and Chicago. Application closes April 15, 2016.

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