Listening about Trans Day Visibility

Tech students attending the Trans Day Visibility event at the Student Union Building on April 4, 2022.

On Monday, the Texas Tech Diversity, Equity and Inclusion hosted a Trans day of visibility event, where a group of students consisting of those a part of the LGBTQIA+ community and allies came together to celebrate and spread awareness on the trans community.  

Darci Williams a third-year music education student from Allen, said there are two big days in the trans community, and Trans Day of visibility is one of them. 

“Every year for Trans Day of Remembrance, we hold this vigil where we talk about all the people who have passed and how hard it is to be trans, because it is hard," Williams said. "Today is a day of celebration, of how beautiful it is to be trans or gender queer and all our gender queer and ally folks here at Texas Tech, get to come and celebrate with each other in a safe space.”  

Williams said she was very glad the administration and the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion sector did all they could to make sure the trans community felt welcomed.  

Above all, Williams said she hopes to educate the Tech and Lubbock community about what it means to be trans and the experiences that trans people have gone through.  

“I always took sort of being feminine presenting and being born a girl was granted,” Aidan Singh, a first-year electrical engineering student from Lubbock, said. “Recently in the past couple months, I've started experimenting with my gender identity specifically with being nonbinary. And so, I feel like in order for me to fully understand what it means to be non-binary is to understand the work of trans individuals and non-binary people who have come before me and so I'm trying to participate more in these events that talk about trans people and trans history.”  

Singh said she has accepted that not everyone is going to accept her and the community all the time, but the importance of spreading knowledge and awareness.  

PrideSTEM is a club that Singh said she has reactivated through some of the people within the trans community and is excited to be able to promote queer spaces.  

“For some reason, the question ‘Am I trans enough?’ is a connecting thread in our transgender community,” Ava Palicki, a second-year chemical engineering student from Denver, said in her monologue. “For so many of us, it seems like maybe we'll never be trans enough. The common thread among our trans family should not be the question ‘Am I trans enough?’ We as a community deserve to spend less time doubting ourselves and more time being ourselves. Because at the end of the day, that's what this is all about. Right?”  

Palicki spoke about the struggles that they experienced when coming out as trans and how that has influenced their life further into adulthood.  

Coming to Tech, Palicki said they never had a trans community, and they were looking for a place to feel accepted and safe among individuals who related to and welcomed their experiences.  

“I want to instill this sense of like, like radical acceptance and radical love,” the speaker said. “Like I think that's what the queer community was originally built on. This idea of like, it doesn't matter who you are or what you feel as long as you're being true to yourself and honoring that, and I think a lot of times people will get so wrapped up in like, drawing boundary lines and labels and trying to keep certain people in and certain people out that we lose sight of the fact that we're really all just like one big messy family.”  

Singh, Williams and Palicki all said they hope to teach other people about their experiences and create a community full of open arms.  

Williams said she thinks allies and other individuals need to take the initiative to educate themselves as a way to support the community.  

“Tonight, when you all go to bed just before, I want you to find a mirror in your house somewhere, and I want you to like walk up to the mirror, look yourself straight in the eyes, and I want you to say, ‘Hey you, you're enough.’,” Palicki said in their monologue.  

This is the technique Palicki said they use to encourage themselves, their fellow transgenders and all individuals who feel as though they are not enough.  

"Say it like you mean it, because eventually, one day, if you keep saying it like you mean it, you will believe it and, on that day, when someone out there tries to make you feel like you are not enough their attacks won't land and that is when you know you've won. This is how I'm healing, this is how we can all heal. Because this is the truth of the matter: we, all of us are enough.” 


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