The Student Newspaper of Lakeside School


The Student Newspaper of Lakeside School


The Student Newspaper of Lakeside School


Welcoming QTSC: Queer and Trans Students of Color

Keep your eyes peeled: there’s a new student group in town! Kicking things off with a panel of queer POC seniors, the QTSC (Queer and Trans Students of Color) alliance/club aims to be a place for students to explore the intersectionality between these two identities. QTSC is already drawing up plans for meetings and activities to close out this school year and open the next. To learn more about the inspiration behind creating this group, as well as its current and future goals, I sat down with one of the co-leaders of the new group.

Why did you want to create QTSC?

It’s in no way meant to be a replacement to GLOW, but more of an addition.

What differentiates us [from GLOW] is that we have more conversations about intersectionality. And the fact that it’s more of an affinity group in terms of being a person of color, but [it’s also] an alliance where you don’t have to necessarily identify as a queer person to join the group.

It’s in no way meant to be a replacement to GLOW, but more of an addition.

Is QTSC officially an affinity group?

We’ll take the rest of our junior year to have club meetings and build an email list, then we’ll check in later about actually being an official affinity group. We’re still talking with GLOW about how we can help out with their events.

It’s more to make sure that there’s enough people who are interested in the club and that we find enough success in it. I think that some miscellaneous worries were about not having enough people who are going to meetings and then also, before we were having meetings, we didn’t really have a definite sense of what we wanted to do.

That’s what pushes us to figure out what we want from the club and how we want to run it. That would then inform us when becoming an official affinity group.

How did this group come into being?

We started talking about this around the beginning of sophomore year. I think what was hard about getting it up and running was finding a faculty advisor; a lot of our conversations that we had with Ms. Lanier were basically whether she knew available faculty advisors who identify as both a queer person and also a person of color. There were multiple times when we asked her, “Hey, do you know anyone who would identify this way?”and she didn’t really have a list. It’s also a harder thing for faculty members to self-identify themselves [as queer or trans]. We actually reached out to Dr. Bynum, and so he was technically our first advisor. But because he’s so busy, it just didn’t work with the [club] schedule.

And so then I think at the end of sophomore year, we had a conversation with GLOW where we were basically saying that the two clubs, even though they probably have the same audience, are separate, and that we don’t intrude on the space that they created. At the beginning of junior year, we had more conversations. That’s when we reached out to Mx. Nan, maybe during the junior winter — so, not too long ago. She told us to reach out to Ms. Rawles. And so that’s how we have Mx. Nan and Ms. Rawles as club advisors. It’s been pretty nice.

What are your hopes for the future of QTSC?

When I was a freshman or sophomore, I didn’t have that many role models that I could see my being a person of color or my queer identity in and also, how those intersect. There’s not a lot of people who I’m able to talk about that with. Specifically, that intersection, because I think for me, that manifests itself in the way that I talk about being queer with my parents.

So, that’s a big thing, at least in my household, and that’s not something that I necessarily talk about with just queer people or just people of color but more people who would have those similar experiences because they share that intersection. I think it’s valuable to have role models that I can look up to, and I think that was a big reason why we wanted to have those seniors who were able to talk about their experiences as queer people. They have more lived experiences, so talking about how they navigated it might guide freshmen who don’t really have a clear sense of how they want to navigate those identities.

How have meetings gone so far?

We had our first meeting a few weeks ago. We invited a couple seniors who identify as queer and people of color, just to talk about their experiences in high school. It was more for the freshmen and sophomores so that they could talk to seniors about their years of experience in navigating their identities.

We are trying to have our next meeting be more of a bonding activity. Last meeting was a lot more of the seniors talking, and not too many perspectives were shared. So it’s speed interviewing, just having questions that you can talk about with another person. A lot of people are able to share their experiences and listen to others’ experiences. But with more one-on-one conversations instead of talking as a whole group once a year.

What do you want students to know about QTSC?

The group is for students to know that there are people around them that identify similarly, and just having people to talk to and have a stronger sense of community with. If you identify that way, just feel free to stop by. You’re not committing yourself to coming every time, but if you want to come, you’re welcome to.

This interview has been edited for clarity.

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About the Contributor
Lael G. '25
Lael G. '25, Copy Editor
Lael is disillusioned.   Born May 29th, the universe stopped when Lael entered the world. Per her own recollection (which is “super sharp”), that day the sun shone brilliantly upon the Earth, babies stopped crying, depression was cured, and militants around the world were perplexed as their weapons began to melt into the ground.   Yet, nothing can last forever. For that moment of “Armistice Day all over again” was infinitesimal. Now, Lael spends her days tossing and turning, giving impassioned TED talks in her head, yearning to return the world to that state of bliss. Since elementary school at St. George -- “once a dragon, always a dragon” -- she’s been rallying the masses to her causes through her work in both the “state media apparatus” (the St. George gazette) and her own, underground student operation -- the deliciously subversive “Daily Whatever.”   In high school, her world-changing career in this field has only continued, whether she’s “Doing it for the Duwamish” in her club at school or in downtown Seattle, reporting in the field on student protests for gun control. “It hasn’t been easy,” she says, “I often think philosophically, about my own life and my place in it, and it’s a burden, the weight of it all, you know?” However, despite the heavy consequences of being an ethics bowl superstar, she gets by as Tatler’s faithful copy editor (with just a little help from GamePigeon and her pet cat, Juliet).

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