LGBT community plant rainbow flag

Students came together to support the LGBT community with a visible display of flags outside Pray-Harrold, Sunday.

EMU junior Alex Bakhaus, event coordinator for the LGBT Resource Center, said the main purpose of the flag display is to inform new students and those who don't know there are LGBT resources on campus, that a community is here for them.

“We are here to create a space for them [students] to come and hang out and be safe and be themselves,” said Bakhaus.

Bakhaus said there were around 2,400 colored flags used to create the huge rainbow flag.

“I really do like this event because you always get new people,” said Bakhaus. “They are always really enthusiastic and really excited to do this.”

EMU senior Averette Robey, advocacy coordinator for the LGBT Resource Center, said visibility is the number one goal for the flag display.

“Visibility is important for new students who don’t know we exist or new students who don’t know there are LGBT students like them out here,” said Robey. “It’s always really wonderful to have the flag display on the hill.”

Robey said he thinks everyone needs a community and a place to fit in on campus. He said having a visible LGBT Resource Center and Queer Unity for Eastern Students (QUEST) makes people feel at home that might not fit into more traditional organizations like Greek Life or athletics.

“I think the important part is giving a wide range of support and community to everyone on this campus,” said Robey.

EMU sophomore Ashley Bardon, president of QUEST, said the flag display allows people to see there are resources on campus for LGBT youth.

Bardon said her favorite part of putting together the flag display was seeing how many people participated.

“It’s awesome how many people showed,” said Bardon.

Bardon said she came from a small town in Ohio and there wasn’t much of a LGBT community so being able to participate in the university's LGBT events like the flag display is great.

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