Networking Night Matches Students with Professionals in LGBTQ fields

On Wednesday April 26th, the Center for Women and Gender Studies hosted a Networking Night in collaboration with the LGBTQ center. Aiming to spread career awareness and provide networking opportunities, students were matched with professionals in various fields relating to LGBTQ activism and work.  Students and professionals engaged in rounds of speed networking, chatting for ten or so minutes on the organizations they’re involved in, how they earned their position, and helpful advice for career planning in the future.

Professionals at the event included Nichole Green, development specialist for WV Free, Christine Jacobs, Administrative Associate for the LGBTQ Center, Sera Mathew, project coordinator for the West Virginia Foundation for Rape Information and Services, Amanda Ray, attorney at Ray Law PLLC, Sam Wilmoth, education specialist for Title XI, Betty Critch, executive director of the WVU National Center of Excellence in Women’s Health, Brandon Gregory, outreach specialist for the Morgantown Vet Center, and Alisa Clements, director of public affairs for Planned Parenthood’s South Atlantic district.

I spoke specifically with Nichole Green on WV Free and was pleasantly surprised with the amount of work they are doing to further reproductive rights and education in WV, especially with their activism in fighting against HB2002 (removing the loophole that allowed teens to get a medical waiver from their doctor to not disclose their abortion to their parents). Nichole was also able to give me some information on internships with WV Free and encouraged all to apply. Brandon Gregory was also very informative on the work he does with the Morgantown Vet Center and was excited to tell me about their upcoming project to transport veterans in WV to see the moving Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial Wall later this year.

The event was a success, forging exciting connections between students and professionals in prospective career fields. Students engaged in direct conversations serving as a reminder fields relating to WGST and LGBTQ are diverse and can lead to many different career options. The Center for Women and Gender Studies thanks the LGBTQ Center for the space to host the event and hopes to continue similar events in the future.

Kaitlyn Aikers
May 3, 2017