May 30, 2024
GLBTQ Welcome Night a hit
Photos by Alysha Miller


The sound of hit music led students to Room 1D23 on Oct. 3 at the beginning of the evening, where, as the sun went down, the party was getting started.

Student life programmer, Ryan Connell, greeted everyone walking through the door to the GLBTQ Welcome Night. Guests were told to help themselves to a chocolate bar from a bowl. From there each person was to join one of the tables with a bowl filled with matching chocolate bars.

The greeting worked as an icebreaker for those who had never met, as they instantly had something in common. As the room filled, guests were treated to pizza and refreshments as well.

Once everyone was settled, Connell began the testimonial part of the evening. He started by telling a bit about his own years as a student at Conestoga College, where he described himself as someone who – in the beginning – didn’t see himself as someone who would take on a leadership role. He eventually did though, and said, “Taking on a leadership role or getting involved really helped.”

He added that it helped him get connected to other students, and suggested it to everyone. “You’ll feel more at home at Conestoga.”

There were testimonials from current students as well, which started with Chris McElligott, a second-year woodworking technology student. McElligott talked about coming to Conestoga and realizing that it’s not as intimidating as people make it out to be.

“Everyone has their own stuff going on, so they don’t really care about yours.”
Residence adviser, Denise Sayers, a second-year recreation and leisure student, talked about the environment at Conestoga’s residence.

“The environment at residence is you get what you take.

“If you want to get involved, go do that!” She added she’s often asked how she knows so many people, and said with a smile, “Just say hi!”

After the testimonials wrapped up Connell started a game in which guests tossed a hula-hoop covered with questions around the room that had to be answered by whoever caught it.

The result was a lot of laughter and conversation. By the end the talks turned to the topic of whether similar nights would be happening in the future.

The current answer is no, but students are encouraged to change that. Connell encourages both those who were in attendance and those who weren’t to look into starting a GLBTQ club. There was definite interest, so the idea could become a reality in the future.

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