To the editors and writers of the Collegian:
I want to thank you for your article concerning transgendered and gender-fluid students. As Ms. Katherine King rightly notes, this is a topic that is rarely publicly discussed at Kenyon. I sincerely hope that Ms. King’s article (“Outside the binary,” Nov. 6) helps to energize an ongoing discussion of our community environment and how it does or does not make transgendered and gender-fluid students comfortable.
And I do hope to be part of that conversation! As interim Title IX coordinator, I invite anyone with concerns about the gender climate of our community to get in touch with me. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org and my office phone is (740) 427-5820. I’m glad to talk about parties, activities, physical arrangements (rooms, bathrooms) and anything else that affects students’ gender-role safety and comfort. Of course, I am also anxious to hear from anyone who has experienced gender-based sexual harassment. If you are not comfortable talking to me, I urge you to talk about your experiences with one of our counselors or a Sexual Misconduct Adviser (SMA). Anything you say to the counselors or SMAs is confidential. They can provide you with support.
I know that we all want a community where everyone feels (and is) comfortable and safe. We all want a community in which we can learn, work and play together with respect. Just please let me know how I can be of help.
Linda Smolak, Interim Title IX Coordinator
and Professor Emerita of Psychology