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University of Iowa News Release


Oct. 23, 2006

LGBT Center Grand Opening Set For Oct. 29

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Resource Center at the University of Iowa will have a grand opening from 2-4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 29. The event marks the formal opening of the center, located at 125 Grand Ave. Court in Iowa City.

The center opened this fall as a space for LGBT students to interact and to enhance their educational experience at the UI.

The center is open to anyone on campus as a place to meet, study and or conduct programming, says Carlos Serrato, an assistant director in the UI Office of Student Life and Center supervisor. He said the LGBT center is similar in concept to other UI student centers that serve an ethnic population, providing permanent gathering space for students of various cultures to interact with events, film series, organizational meetings and other programs.

The LGBT Resource Center is staffed by a graduate student assisted by three undergraduate Work Study students. The two-story house has a kitchen, study and meeting areas. A library and resource center is under construction, and there are plans for offices for GLBT organizations. Community groups may also use the center, Serrato said.

The home was a private residence before it became university property in 2000 and later was a rental property for incoming faculty. In spring 2005, the executive board of the UI Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Allied Union met with former UI President David Skorton and Vice President of Student Services and Dean of Students Phillip Jones to discuss the possibility of securing a center for the UI LGBT community. University officials approved the center in spring 2006 and it opened this fall to students.

"The existence of the center is an exciting change and progression for the LGBT community on campus," said Cody Shafer of the GLBTAU Executive Council. "We look forward to working with the Center to promote equality and tolerance in and around the University of Iowa."

STORY SOURCE: University News Service, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

CONTACTS: Media: George McCrory, 319-384-0012,; Program: Carlos Serrato, 319-335-3059