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University hosts LGBT ‘Discovery Camp’ for young teens

Program encourages high school students to explore LGBT identities

The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee hosts an annual “Pride Discovery Camp,” a summer program put on for teenagers by the school’s LGBT Resource Center.

According to the event’s webpage, the camp “is designed to inspire LGBT+ high school students to embrace their multiple identities and gain a better understanding of marginalized identities through community building, activism, self-expression, and connections in the LGBT+ Communities.”

Through various activities, the program seeks to build “confidence and leadership skills” in the participants, who will “discuss ways in which queer or ally leaders can work together collectively to build a sense of belonging and acceptance.”

The camp “provides a unique camp experience that empowers and enriches students with confidence and leadership skills and encourages campers to realize their full potential.”

The LGBT Resource Center did not respond to numerous requests from The College Fix for more information on the program.

According to Milwaukee Magazine, the Pride Discovery Camp was started in 2013 and has been held on-and-off during summers since then based on the center’s financial resources. It is a five-night camp that has hosted between a dozen and a few dozen students at once.

Past camp activities have included hearing talks on career opportunities, gay rights, and the history of gay rights, as well as setting future goals and encouraging social justice advocacy.

Dates for the next Pride Discovery Camp are yet to be determined.

According to the school’s LGBT Resource Center website, the center’s mission is to provide “social-justice-based education, resources, programming, and support for students across the spectrums of gender and sexuality, with an emphasis on intersectional experiences.”

Other annual programs hosted on campus by the center include a drag show (described as a “staple” at the university), recitation of ‘coming out’ monologues, and a lavender graduation for LGBT students.

The drag show has “consistently ranked as one of the largest drag performances in the Midwest and as one of the university’s largest on-campus events,” according to the university’s website.

The Lavender Graduation, meanwhile, is billed as celebrating “the achievements of the graduate through the lens of their identity across the spectrum of gender identity, gender expression and/or sexual orientation.”

MORE: Catholic university to host LGBT ‘Pride Prom’ in campus ballroom

MORE: Catholic university offers gender studies courses that tout ‘the queer self’

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Edyta Wolk -- Franciscan University of Steubenville