University to spend $28k on renovations for new LGBTQ Center

Ferris State University is spending $28,000 to renovate space for a new LGBTQ center that is slated to be finished by mid-February.

LGBTQ Coordinator Kendree Berg told the the FSU Torch that the project “has been in the works for a very long time,” and may even have begun before she began attending the institution as a student in 2010.

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“It was written into the diversity plan by Dr. Pilgrim in the diversity committee a few years ago,” she told the publication. “More recently, students have been doing a really good job of continuing to advocate for this center and making sure that the university knows that this is a priority and that it needs to happen now.”

Berg explained that the center will always have someone “to greet students, to answer their questions,” and to “listen to them if they have something they need to talk about.

“But really,” Berg continued, “it’s just a place where we can host events where our students organizations can meet if they want to and where people can hang out and meet other people like them and just feel really comfortable and safe in that environment.”

A university spokesperson told Campus Reform that the new center will occupy an existing space in on campus, but that renovation is estimated to cost the school tens of thousands of dollars.

“The new LGBTQ Center at Ferris State University will be housed in existing space in Ferris’ University Center where other student organizations and services are housed,” the school official said. “The estimated renovation cost is $28,000.”

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In another interview with the school’s newspaper, Berg stressed that the university as a whole “does a really great job of accommodating LGBTQ students” and that the overall goal is “making sure that we have everything in writing and that we promise to follow through on certain things.

“We’re really talking about making sure that our students know about our preferred name policy, making sure that we are supporting our LGBTQ athletes, making sure that we are supporting our students in the housing environment, and making sure that our classrooms are really inclusive,” she explained.

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