The Pride Center is hosting the Mix N’ Mingle event to kick off the spring semester with activities such as games and discussions of resources that students are accessible to.
The center also welcomes all students to attend for a safe and comfortable environment to talk, ask questions, and make connections.
“The event is geared towards the LGBTQ community and allies as well,” said event assistant and lead on Mix N’ Mingle, Stacey Leal. “We are aiming for people to engage and come together to get to know each other.”
Pride Center supervisor Joseph Cayanan said that Mix N’ Mingle is a networking between students where they can meet new people, but the center also has many upcoming events.
Karaoke nights will also take place with the first one Feb. 8 in the Games Room at the USU. Karaoke nights happen only three times during the semester, the other dates being March 8 and April 5.
Along with this, the center holds weekly events such as Tuesday Talks, Monday’s T-Time, and Thursday’s Coffee Nights which all students are welcomed to attend. Sex Week is another event that will be held in March which discusses safe sex practices, body positivity, and more.
“The programming calendar is full of Pride Center events, the reason being that there is a demand for it,” Cayanan said. “Our students really get a lot from those opportunities to connect with one another.”
The Pride Center is a safe haven for many students because it is a comfortable environment where topics such as sex, coming out, gender identity, relationships, and more are discussed.
“The Pride Center is where I met my family,” said student Ron Villarreal, who will be working at the Mix N’ Mingle event. “I found people that I not only love but I feel like they love me as well because of how connected we are being LGBTQ.”
“This physical space to me is somewhere I can come relax and take a breath away from classes or spaces that I don’t feel welcomed in because I know I am welcomed here,” Villarreal said.
Students can attend the center to relax, do homework, study, or just hangout. The center allows people to be themselves without having to worry about their surroundings of people who do not share the same values.
“Students come here because they feel comfortable, it is a home away from home,” Villarreal said.
The Pride Center resources are their daily events that take place where anyone can attend, but they also provide sexual resources such as protection. Condoms are available to anyone and are welcomed to take any amount desired.
“If we can help you find assistance, regardless of what the situation might be whether it be with mental health or housing we can connect you with different organizations to meet your needs,” Leal said.
Mix N’ Mingle will be held in the Pride Center located in the University Student Union on Feb. 2. The event is free and will run from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.