Training sessions held to increase LGBTQ awareness

Faculty and students are joining alliances to make Northern Kentucky University’s campus a safer environment for the LGBTQ community.
Brandelyn Tosolt, president of Staff Administration and Faculty for Equality (SAFE) and an assistant professor of teacher education, has partnered with Michael Loch, junior public relations major and president of NKY Equality Now, to hold Allied Zone training sessions for faculty and students.

The three hour training session taught by Tosolt was put together by researching Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network information and examining how other universities educate their campuses about the LGBTQ community. The training session covers main points such as terminology, issues faced by LGBTQ youth, how to be supportive and how to handle negative behavior.
Loch joined the effort to recruit more students to participate in the trainings. “Faculty and staff the main participants… I am trying to advertise Allied Zone for the student population,” Loch said.

Beth Volpenhein, a public administration graduate student, went through the training for her job at the campus recreation center. Volpenhein found the role playing exercises the most useful.
“It helped me realize how to handle real life situations I might be confronted with,” Volpenhein said.
Tosolt revived the Allied Zone trainings after faculty and staff began asking about the program. “I see that I have power as a professor. I have to give a voice to people with less power,” said Tosolt.

Sessions will be held throughout the semester, including Feb. 20 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. in SU 10; March 1 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. in SU 106; and April 26 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. in SU 108. If there are any further questions about Allied Zone training, contact Brandelyn Tosolt at