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Rainbow

NEWSLETTER

Volume 23, Number 1, Fall 2016 The Rainbow Newsletter is published once a semester by the Rainbow Special Interest Group (SIG) of NAFSA: Association of International Educators. The Rainbow SIG is comprised of diverse NAFSAns whose goals are to combat homophobia, heterosexism and transphobia within NAFSA, to counsel international students and study abroad students who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender, and to support gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender professionals in international education.

In This Edition: • Fall Regional Conferences - Page 2 • Curating Flipboard Magazine International Safe Zone to Support International LGBT Students - Pages 3 & 4 • Gender Identity and Affirmative Actions in the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte - Page 5 • Fund for Education Abroad Updates - Page 6 • #FiveFilms4Freedom Screenings Across the USA! - Page 7 • Global Education Allyship Training - Pages 8 & 9 • Indiana Business Students Intern at Thai NGO Addressing LGBT Rights and Sexual Health Issues - Pages 10 & 11 • Get Connected to Rainbow SIG on Linkedin! - Page 11 • Rainbow Leadership and Regional Representation - Page 12

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Volume 23, No. 1, Rainbow Newsletter


GET INVOLVED!

Subscribe: to the Rainbow SIG Listserv by completing the online form. Like: Join the private Rainbow SIG Group on Facebook Give: Donate to the Rainbow Scholarship (Page 7) Reach Out: Email the listserv by sending your message to: rainbow-l@indiana.edu Contribute: Submit content for the Rainbow SIG Newsletter (Contact Editors: Page 12) Represent: Volunteer to become a NAFSA Rainbow SIG Regional Rep

Fall Regional Conferences We encourage you to consider attending one of the NAFSA Regional Conferences this fall. These professional development opportunities are a great opportunity to connect with local professionals and learn alongside peers. More information on theses conferences is available here: http://www.nafsa.org/Connect_and_Network/NAFSA_Regions/Regional_Conferences/ • Region I - October 10-14 - Anchorage, AK • Region II - October 31-November 4 - Santa Fe, NM • Region III (bi-regional) - November 6-10 - New Orleans, LA • Region IV - October 24-27 - Springfield, MO • Region V - October 26-28 - Milwaukee, WI • Region VI - November 6-8 - Indianapolis, IN • Region VII (bi-regional) - November 6-10 - New Orleans, LA • Region VIII - November 15-18 - Philadelphia, PA • Region X - October 24-26 - Lake Placid, NY • Region XI - October 18-20 - Newport, RI • Region XII - October 31-November 4 - Palm Springs, CA

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Curating Flipboard Magazine International Safe Zone to Support International LGBT Students

By: Kyoung Mi Choi, kchoi@csufresno.edu & Christel van der Boom, christel@flipboard.com International LGBT students face issues with internalized homophobia, fear of persecution upon repatriation, coming out decisions, and finding a supportive social and cultural community, in addition to the commonly identified challenges among international students (e.g., a profound sense of loss, communication, education and immigration difficulties, dietary restrictions, and financial stress). This would be particularly true for international students from countries where non-heterosexual identities are less accepted or even persecuted. The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA, 2016) lists 73 countries where sexual activity by LGBT people is considered a crime, which means approximately 38 percent (2.8 billion people) of the total population (7.4 billion) live in countries where being gay is a crime. The death penalty can be imposed for same-sex intimacy in 13 of them, including Iran, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and in parts of Nigeria and Somalia. Hate crimes (e.g., killing, torturing, incarceration) targeting LGBT individuals are still prevalent in many international communities. Therefore, the unique needs and challenges international LGBT students face should be acknowledged and understood by student affairs professionals and educators in higher education. Within-Group Diversity Among International LGBT Students There is great diversity among international students. The challenges and needs students from countries such as Canada, the Netherlands, South Africa, and Spain have, where same-sex marriage is recognized and legally protected, differ greatly from those who come from countries where basic LGBT human rights are neither recognized nor protected. For instance, international LGBT students may be in different developmental stages in terms of how they identify themselves as LGBT. For some international students, coming to the United States and learning about diverse sexual orientations could be the first time they question and explore their own sexual identity; on the other hand, some international students decide to come to the United States in order to feel safe and comfortable with their own sexual identity or be more active within LGBT communities. The Importance of Belonging Being both international and LGBT creates difficulty to find a sense of home with either co-national students or domestic LGBT students. For most international students, a community with co-national students can provide great support in the transition to a new culture and campus life. Yet, it can be difficult for LGBT international students to come out or explore who they are due to a fear of exposing any unwanted information, sometimes via social media, to friends and families back in home countries. As a result, international LGBT students often remain invisible. It is rare to find a support group for international LGBT students where both general LGBT topics and the unique challenges and needs of international students are discussed. Due to privacy, safety, saving face, or fear of discrimination or punishment, international LGBT students often utilize online communities rather than face-to-face support systems. Many international LGBT students feel uncomfortable to share very intimate topics or culturally taboo topics with their counselors or advisors, which may bring intense shame and humiliation. One of the key characteristics of international students is mobility. Frequent use of social media and messaging apps is a part of students’ daily lives, as it provides a way to connect with friends and families in their home countries. However, international LGBT students are often not comfortable or just plain scared to speak out openly on social media about their personal lives and issues that matter to them. Therefore, finding safe places and ways to share experiences, and have access to information and resources offers tremendous support to this population.

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International Safe Zone Flipboard Magazine as a Virtual Community Flipboard gives people a single place to follow all of their interests and is a popular mobile application. It also allows users to make their own magazines by compiling articles from around the Web. International Safe Zone is a Flipboard Magazine that offers a resource guide for student affairs professionals and educators who support international LGBTQ students. Moreover, the magazine is a virtual space where readers can comment on articles and have conversations with the curators or each other, without having to reveal their identity. The magazine is available on the Web at http://flip.it/ISZ (or http://www.internationalsafezone.org) and inside the free Flipboard app by searching for the title. Educators and student affairs professionals use the magazine to collect and share relevant information with students such as news about LGBT rights and activism in Uganda, Russia, Korea and other countries, as well as coming out stories from LGBT people all over the world. The magazine is a central element in our International Safe Zone workshop that addresses the unique challenges and needs faced by international LGBT students and provides culturally sensitive approaches that student affairs professionals can use to create a safe space. * If you have any questions, please contact us via International Safe Zone Flipboard Magazine (http://flip.it/ISZ), Twitter (@ISZnow), or website (http://www.internationalsafezone.org).

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Gender Identity and Affirmative Actions in the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN), Natal, Brazil

By: Janeusa Trindade Souto, Ph.D (janeusatsouto@gmail.com), Márcio Venício Barbosa, Ph.D (marcio.barbosa@sri.ufrn.br), Ângela Maria Paiva Cruz, Ph.D (reitora@reitoria.ufrn.br) The Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN) has been at the vanguard of federal universities in the north and northeast of Brazil in creating inclusive policies for transgender students. In 2012, UFRN passed a social name resolution ensuring that students and employees whose official name did not adequately reflect their gender identity could use their “social name,” or preferred name, in academic and functional records.

In 2012, there also began a discussion about the need for unisex bathrooms in UFRN. Although it was a controversial discussion, some Academic Centers adopted unisex bathrooms, ensuring transgender students’ basic right to use the bathroom facilities that correspond to their gender identity. Finally, UFRN was the first university in Brazil to allow students to choose student housing according to their gender identity. In 2013, the first transgender female student moved into female student housing, which is one of the greatest achievements of transgender students in Brazil.

All images re-produced with student’s consent.

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Fund for Education Abroad: Rainbow Scholarship The Rainbow Scholarship was established in 2011 in memory of Dave Burkhart by his partner, Bo Keppel - a long time Rainbow SIG Board Member. Dave never earned a college degree but greatly admired the international students and advisors with whom Bo worked, attending NAFSA conferences with her year after year. When Bo suggested the Rainbow Scholarship initiative in Dave’s memory, colleagues rallied, funding the first Rainbow Scholar in 2012. To date, twelve Rainbow Scholars have been awarded, including two Silver Lining Fund recipients. The Rainbow Scholarship increases access for self-identified LGBTQI students at any U.S. college or university, and is made possible by dedicated members of the Rainbow SIG of NAFSA, FEA board members, donors and volunteers. Significantly advancing diversity in study abroad, a total of 117 students, including first-generation, minority, LGBTQI, community college, and students studying in non-traditional destinations, will now have benefited from over $500,000 in scholarships awarded since the Fund’s inception in 2010. The vast majority (80%) of the 2016 FEA Scholars are first-generation college students, three quarters (76%) are of minority background and will study the host country language (72%), and over half (56%) attend minority-serving institutions or community colleges. The mission of the Fund for Education Abroad (FEA) is to increase opportunities for dedicated, underrepresented American students to participate in high-quality education abroad programs by reducing financial restrictions through the provision of scholarships. The 2017-2018 application cycle will open November 16, 2016 and applications will be due by 12:00pm EST on January 11, 2017. Please help spread the news to your students and encourage them to apply: http://fundforeducationabroad.org/ • Flyer to Share with your Students: http://fundforeducationabroad.org/wp-content/uploads/ FEA-Scholars-2016-WEB.pdf

There are a number of ways you can help support the Fund for Education Abroad Scholarships, here are a few: • Attend fundraising events in your area • Donate to FEA - http://fundforeducationabroad.org/donate/ • Review scholarship applications - http://fundforeducationabroad.org/volunteers/ • Sign up for the FEA newsletter • Promote the scholarship to your students Page 6

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British Council’s #fiveFilms4Freedom; the LGBT Experience Through Film By Gina Del Tito, gina.deltito@britishcouncil.org Over the past two years, the British Council in partnership with the British Film Institute’s BFI Flare London LGBT Film Festival has been building momentum around our #fiveFilms4freedom initiative. Launched with support from the UN Human Rights Commission Free & Equal campaign, it is the first program of its kind which combines film and social media, reaching audiences in over 179 countries around the world. Through digital storytelling and the celebration of individuals promoting freedom and equality, the project continues to convene a global discussion on LGBT issues through the lens of film. In 2016, the second year of the project, the British Council worked through our global network to build the #fiveFilms4freedom 2016 Global List. The list includes 33 incredible people who are using culture to promote freedom and equality and who are provoking debate or risking their lives to promote the rights of LGBT people in their society or country. The list includes individuals like Charles Radcliffe, Chief of Global Issues & Intergovernmental Affairs at the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in New York. He leads the UN’s work on the protection of the rights of LGBT people and directs UN Free & Equal, a global multimedia campaign against homophobia and transphobia that has reached an estimated two billion people globally since 2013. The strength of the project comes from the films’ ability to show the lived experience of members of the LGBT community and to build empathy and understanding through the narrative power of storytelling. Particularly with the 2016 series, the films focus on the identities and stories of young people faced with uncertainty about their identity and their place in the world. This October, in celebration of LGBT History Month, the British Council and the UK Foreign Office across the United States are organizing screenings of the 2016 films, bringing together partners across all sectors of business, the arts, higher education and civil society to share the stories of these films, and to discuss their implications for building more diverse societies. 2017 marks the 50th anniversary of decriminalization in the UK, and as such is a year of reflection and celebration about the progress that has been made and planning for a future that is more inclusive and values the human rights of all people. Screenings of the films will take place in New York City (October 19th), Los Angeles (October 20th), Miami (October 25th), and Washington DC (October 27th). Each film screening will feature a panel discussion with local advocates and activists to emphasize different themes throughout the films and engage with local issues and challenges. To learn more about the events across the US, and to attend a screening near you, please visit: https://www.britishcouncil.org/fivefilms4freedom. If you are not located near to one of the screenings, or are unable to attend, sign up for the British Council newsletter to hear announcements of next year’s digital festival, due to take place in March 2017.

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Global Education Allyship Training

By: Sarah Pauling, University of Michigan, spauling@umich.edu This summer the University of Michigan Center for Global and Intercultural Study (CGIS) created a custom training in partnership with the campus LGBTQ resource office. The Spectrum Center’s Tynishia Walker was able to utilize previously-existing ally training content to create an experience aimed specifically at international educators. We then invited staff from departments ranging from abroad offices to cultural centers: colleagues working with both ingoing and outgoing students in a wide variety of contexts. Hoping to serve staff at all knowledge levels, the training included a breakdown of the specific language used by and for the community. The discussion strove to incorporate nuance and recognition of the fluidity of both experience and societal understandings of sexuality, attractionality, and gender. Following this introduction, participants were encouraged to reflect on their own social identities and how this could shape the perception of them at home and abroad. This flowed into a discussion of allyship at home: how can we practice bystander intervention when we witness bias incidents? How can we make a queer student feel at home in our office? The variety of staff available from other offices provided a strong basis for discussion beyond our own department. This cross-campus element was of particular value. Each office or department had its own concerns regarding international education and how to address issues specific to LGBTQ students in study abroad. The discussion that resulted was engaging and useful, raising complex questions with a variety of possible answers. For example, a student who expresses discomfort with a Japanese host family’s invitation to wear a kimono (due to her avoidance of dresses or makeup in the US) can be asked—without judgement—to reflect on the outcomes on either choice, considering the effects both on her internal well-being and her relationship with the family. Ultimately, the decision must be hers, but as educators we hope to encourage a wide base of thought beforehand in order to help her make the decision within the cultural context.

Other scenarios were even less clear-cut. On LGBTQ issues, educators are functioning in an imperfect world. We cannot prevent discrimination at home or abroad, and often our solutions are equally flawed, even in best practices. The best we could come up with, in some situations, was the minimization of harm.

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Reflecting a concern of many international educators, the group discussed an advising appointment with a gay student interested in a country known to be hostile to LGBTQ individuals. How should this be approached? How much should the advisor weigh concerns about the student’s safety against her ability to make an educated choice? Should she be encouraged to consider other sites, or should she be encouraged to hide her identity? Ultimately, though the group couldn’t agree on a universal course of action, we agreed on the need to provide the student with as much information as possible and be a source of support as necessary. In the absence of a single path forward, the student should at least feel that her educators are on her side and that there are resources available for her as she makes these decisions. Equally salient was the discussion of providing these resources. We hope to give students as much information as possible in order to help them prepare themselves. However, once we ourselves become aware of these resources, how do we convey them to students? The discussions around this topic became a focal point, especially in regards to pre-departure orientations and accessible websites. The consensus, based on wide-ranging discussion from our pool of professionals from various offices, was that information should whenever possible be made available to all students, so that no one student is forced to out themselves simply to find information or support. In many senses international education is a perfect fit for education in queer issues. Queer theory stresses transgressive boundary-crossing, a sense of self outside of pre-defined categorization and recognition of situational and personal nuance. International study produces many of these same discussions: what signals can an individual use to visually convey their identity in the US versus in Spain? What displays of affection are considered normative in the US versus abroad? Will a student’s most salient identities at home (gender identity, ethnicity, sexuality, etc.) outweigh their identity as “American” in a local’s eyes? That situational fluidity produces fertile ground for discussion in issues surrounding identity, particularly in regards to students experiencing their identity across borders for the first time. We as educators hope to be able to support students throughout the transition.

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Indiana Business Students Intern at Thai NGO Addressing LGBT Rights and Sexual Health Issues By: Heilwig Jones, heilwig@kayavolunteer.com Rose Johnson and Zane Breisch, two students from Indiana University’s Kelly School of Business, were looking for a non-traditional internship this summer. Kaya Responsible Travel placed them in an NGO Development Internship at a project in Thailand. The project supports local gay men, transgender women, and male sex workers by addressing various sexual health, social and human rights issues affecting these communities. During their eight weeks in Thailand, Rose and Zane immersed themselves in the local culture and community. Living with homestay families, they made a lot of friends and were invited to some amazing events during their stay, including participation in a Buddhist ceremony and involvement in a vigil set up to honor victims of the Orlando shooting. As business students, the intern role focussed on organizational planning, with learning objectives that included understanding how operations were funded, and how the goals of the organization were achieved. From the NGO’s perspective, Rose and Zane brought with them new ideas for fundraising, provided a channel with which to connect with contacts in the US embassy, helped with translations and assisted in event planning amongst other activities.

Westerners commonly perceive that Thailand is open to the LGBT community, particularly to transgender individuals. The term “ladyboy” is commonly used as a translations for the Thai term “kathoey”- referring to transgender women or effeminate gay men who are often considered a third gender. Shows such as the “Ladyboys of Bangkok” sell out theatres around the world and the Thai “ladyboy” stereotype pops up in Hollywood films all the time . But while the culture may be accepting, the reality for community is often not so glamorous. The truth is, legal protection for LGBT persons remains limited in Thailand. There is still no marriage equality act, no way for transgender people to receive legal gender change, and a lack of any legal recognition of transgender identity or same-sex partnership. This leads to all the problems we are very familiar with, such as the inability for couples to make medical decisions for their spouses, receive tax benefits gifted to married couples, and co-manage spousal assets. These issues, coupled with reports of increased HIV/AIDS prevalence among the MSM (Men who have Sex with Men) population in Northern Thailand, led to the foundation of this project. Targeting the MSM community, the project aims to • Enhance understanding of HIV/AIDS, gender diversity, human rights, sexual rights and sexual health • Reduce stigma and discrimination attached to the MSM populations. • Provide quality health care services and promote effective innovations of HIV prevention. As part of their work, the organization visits universities, colleges and high schools around the districts in Chiang Mai Province raising awareness and reducing stigma, and does health outreach in the city workplaces of male gay sex workers, such as gay saunas and massage parlors. At its central offices, they offer an open clinic testing and treating for STIs and operate a mobile testing unit that travels outside of the city to more rural parts of the Province. Other projects they participated in included helping set up a beauty pageant for transgender women which required each contestant to take a STI health test in order to be able to participate, and staging a play at the US consulate in Chiang Mai promoting the issues that local gay men, transgender women and male sex workers face in Thailand today. Continued on Page 11

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As business students, Rose and Zane were able to help develop fundraising proposals for potential and current international donors, as well as helping with the organization’s marriage equality act campaign, - which they hope will be in place as early as 2018. Zane felt his experience really helped open his eyes to new issues. He writes: “Most of the highlights I will take back with me are from the consulate visit, working the events, and also seeing the different people that support this organization. For me, I didn’t really understand LGBTQ rights before; where I will go back to the states and better understand some of the same problems I have seen here.” Rose told the authors: “Working here opened up doors for me because I do want to travel and work outside of the country, and this experience will make me more valuable for a business. It has personally made it more feasible to to travel, I am the first in my family to travel abroad, and before this experience it seemed really difficult. I have also enjoyed the friendships and relationships I have built with Zane and the other people I work with daily. We feel like a family, and it is something I am happy I can take with me as a great memory.”

CONNECT ON LINKEDIN

Let’s virtually spend more time together on the Rainbow SIGs official LinkedIn group. This closed group supports the Rainbow SIG mission and its members by increasing networking, fostering collaboration, sharing resources, and providing information. The group page will feature articles, reports, research, presentations and more (because we all like more!). Here are three recent posts that will (hopefully) seal the deal: • The first nationwide study to ask high school students about their sexuality • What Will College Be Like for a Transgender Student in North Carolina? • Research: Counseling and advocacy with LGBT international students Ready to make it official? Request to join the NAFSA Rainbow Special Interest Group (SIG) today! Dawn Harris Wooten www.linkedin.com/in/dchwooten dawn@nafsa.org

Have a great idea or story to share?

We’re looking for submission for the next edition to come out in the fall. Contact Darren Gallant or Sarah McNeely to propose a submission. The formal call for submissions will come out in late summer /early fall. We’re looking for: • submissions from professionals working with international students in the USA • recaps of relevent regional events and programs • country profiles - what’s it like for students when they get abroad? • new and creative ideas on how to support students Page 11 Volume 23, No. 1, Rainbow Newsletter


Rainbow Regional Representatives Region I - OPEN

Region VII Heath Thompson; hmthompson@ua.edu PJ Shoulders; pshoulders@ceastudyabroad.com

Region II - OPEN Region III Mark Powell; mfpowell@uno.edu Jeff Simpson; jeff.simpson10@okstate.edu Region IV Will Bonfiglio; boniglio.w@wustl.edu Kristen Albrecht; AlbrechtKL@missouri.edu David Gardner; david.gardner@mnsu.edu Region V Jesus Velasco; jvelasco@millikin.edu Joseph Halaas; jhalaas@bus.wisc.edu Mark Chung Kwan Fan; chungkw1@msu.edu Lawrence Rodriguez; lrodriguez2@saic.edu Andy Quackenbush; quackenbush@studyabroad.wisc.edu Region VI Kyle Hayes; kyghayes@iu.edu

Region VIII Brett Wobbe; bwobbe1@jhu.edu Region X Rebecca Greenstrom; becky.greenstrom@nyu.edu Andrew Platt; andrew.platt@fredonia.edu Region XI David Griffin; David_Griffin@emerson.edu Region XII Steve Jacques; jacques@hawaii.edu Outside US Representatives Kevin Stensberg (China); k.stensberg@thebejingcenter.org Christopher Daberer (Canada); christopher.daberer@fo.ualberta.ca

Rainbow Leadership Team

RAINBOW CO-CHAIRS • Scott Tayloe ‘15-’17; stayloe@cisabroad.com • Lukman Arsalan ‘16-’18; lukman.arsalan@trincoll.edu

NEWSLETTER CO-EDITORS • Darren R. Gallant ‘15 -’17; gallantd@brandeis.edu • Sarah McNeely ‘16-’18; sarah.mcneely@apiabroad.com WEB-CONTENT MANAGERS • Ray Bates ‘15-’17; ray@keiabroad.org • Luis Legaspi ‘16-’18; llegaspi@ucsd.edu MEMBERSHIP COORDINATOR • Susan Carty (Advisory Board); scarty@iu.edu

LISTSERV MANAGERS • Daniel Soto (Executive Board); dsoto@indiana.edu • J. Scott Van Der Meid (Advisory Board); svanderm@brandeis.edu SCHOLARSHIP COORDINATORS • Jan Kieling ‘15-’17; yaneechay@hotmail.com • Gina Asalon ‘15-’17; asalonga@miamioh.edu • Conrad Zeutenhorst ‘15-’17; czeut@umd.edu • Mark Lenhart (Honorary); mlenhart@academic-travel.com • Danielle Samek ‘14-16 • Luca Lipparini ‘14-’16 • Ashley Glenn ‘14-’16

TREASURER • Rick Russo; russo@berkeley.edu

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Profile for Rainbow SIG

Fall 2016 Rainbow Newsletter  

In this edition: upcoming regional conferences, updates from FEA, International Safe Zone, LinkedIn, and more! Please contact the current ed...

Fall 2016 Rainbow Newsletter  

In this edition: upcoming regional conferences, updates from FEA, International Safe Zone, LinkedIn, and more! Please contact the current ed...

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