A class about public speaking on gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender issues is being offered this fall after two years of planning, said Mindy Michels, director of the GLBTA Resource Center.
The class works with AU’s Rainbow Speakers Bureau, which Michels established in 1997 to teach students how to speak about GLBT topics, like the difference between civil unions and marriage and adoption laws in different states.
The bureau sponsors about 20 speakers each year on campus and at local high schools and church groups. But students aren’t required to speak with the bureau to take the class.
The class will cover public speaking techniques and provide a knowledge base on topics including the history of the GLBT community, GLBT health and well-being and sexual identity in relation to race, sex and religion.
Before the class, titled Public Speaking on Issues of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity, was offered some students learned similar material through independent study. Although the information was mostly the same, it’s important to have a centralized course, Michels said.
Melissa Borodumovich, a sophomore in the School Of Communication and one of 20 students in the class, said she is taking the course because “as a lesbian student I know I’m not up to date on current GLBTA issues, and I would like to become more aware.”