Gender and Sexuality Alliance provides community

The Gender and Sexuality Alliance aims to create a supportive environment on campus.

(From left) Cassidy Johnson’s daughter, Cassidy Johnson and Melissa Grey protesting Chick-Fil-A. (Photos courtesy of the GSA).

“The mission of GSA is to make a strong, supportive community, to increase awareness and acceptance, and to provide resources regarding LGBTQ+ issues and culture,” Melissa Grey, co-advisor of GSA, said.

MCCC’s GSA is a student led club.

“It provides a welcoming space for all students and community members and not just students and community members identifying as LGBTQ+,” said Jenna Bazzell, co-advisor of GSA.

Bazzell said within Southeast Michigan, MCCC’s GSA is one of the few campus clubs that allows for community membership.

“The GSA is not just important to the community,” said Cassidy Johnson, Co-Chair of GSA. “The GSA is the community, and that is important.”

Club meetings are open to anyone and are held on Thursdays from 12:30 -1:30 p.m. in L-111 or you can join virtually via zoom.

Grey said that along with club meetings, the GSA holds social meetings every other Thursday from 2:30-3:30 p.m. in Room L-208.

Taking the leap to join a club and meet new people can be hard.

Johnson said she was fearful to join GSA because she did not know anyone. She said as an older college student she felt she might not fit in, but in the end she did it anyway.

“And let me tell you, it has been the best decision of my life,” Johnson said. “Not only have I met an amazing group of people, but I have also taken on a leadership role, which is not something I ever thought I would do.”

These meetings will have activities planned, like playing games or doing crafts, Grey said.

“At the last meeting, members made posters for a protest GSA participated in,” Grey said. “This way students who could not be at the protest could still participate by making signs – and they made some awesome ones.”

The students are still in the process of making plans for events this year, Grey said.

Some of these plans involve creating another Pride Prom, Grey said.

“We had one every year before COVID and hope to do this again soon, maybe in the spring,” Grey said.

Bazzell said another student membership interest involves the education and development of resources and presentations on gender and sexuality education.

GSA members have found the information and experience to be rewarding.

“Being a part of the GSA is teaching me things about myself and providing me with knowledge and experience I will be able to utilize in my career,” Johnson said.

Aside from in person or virtual meetings, GSA can be found on Facebook at MCCCGSA and you can join their Messenger chat or follow their website.

Events are posted in MCCC Happenings, which is delivered to the student email, flyers are often posted around campus for big events Grey said.

“One of the strongest aspects of the GSA is the support myself as well as the other co-adviser, Professor Melissa Grey, provides to the students to be a vocal advocate for the resources, support, and acceptance they see missing within Monroe County,” Bazzell said.