USM Celebrates National Coming Out Day


Southern Miss PRISM celebrates National Coming Out Day. | Huey Turlich, SM2

PRISM, one branch under the Inclusion and Multicultural Engagement organization, hosted a celebration in honor of National Coming Out Day on Oct. 11 on Weathersby Lawn. The student organization put together activities and food for the LGBTQIA+ community to celebrate the strength and courage it took for each individual to come out and also for the strength needed for future individuals that will come out when they are ready.  

National Coming Out Day is observed annually to celebrate coming out and to raise awareness of the LGBTQIA+ community and the civil rights movement. All coming-out stories are not the same. Each one is unique to the individual whether it has a positive outcome or a negative one. The importance of this day goes deeper than celebrating as a community. It is to bring awareness to the strength it takes for individuals to come out and truly be who they are. 

The night was filled with dancing and festivities for everyone to enjoy. They had painting, coloring, friendship bracelet making, and to top it off, a friendly game of Jenga.  

“It is a celebration to commend the strength and what it took for us to come out,” said Wes Shaffer the coordinator of PRISM. Prism’s main goal was to host a fun night filled with activities and fun for the LGBTQIA+ community and their allies to enjoy. They want the students that have come out and also those who are struggling to come out to know they have a safe place within the organization and a community to support them every step of the way. They stand for equality and to be a light for college students going through situations that some may not understand.  

The event was a success and many individuals came out to celebrate and participate in the various activities they had to offer.