Written by Izzy Hubbert
On Wednesday 16th February, in celebration of Valentine’s Day and LGBT History Month, we enjoyed a ‘Love is Love Formal’ at St John’s. One of our undergraduate students, Izzy, was invited to say a few words about Pride at St John’s. Here’s what Izzy said:
“A big part of the university is self-development. I have never met a graduating student who states they are the exact same person who walked through those big blue doors on freshers Sunday. To be a Johnian is to grow, to learn, to give and to develop. And I think that translates well into what Pride means at John’s.
For many, Pride can be daunting. There is a certain privilege that comes with knowing who you are. The self-assured declaration of self; to know who you are, who you like and how you dress. For some this is something they’ve know since day one, and for others it takes a little while longer. Pride can be scary to those who feel like they should be apart of Pride but not sure in what way.
So in the same way we celebrate academic development, sports development and creative success, we celebrate personal development. We celebrate and take pride in the journey each one of us is a part of, in understanding who we are.
(photo showcasing celebrations at the Love is Love formal).
Pride at John’s is the celebration of self, it is the celebration of LGBT+ rights and how far they have come. It celebrates the heroes of the past, celebrates Vasey, celebrates those who are out and those who are figuring it out.
(Izzy Hubbert (left) and Revd Professor David Wilkinson, Principal of St John’s College (right) at the ‘Love is Love formal’).
You are not any less valid. Even if you do not yet have the words to say who you are, or you aren’t ready yet, or you are trying to figure it out. You are just as valid and just as welcome and pride is for you too.
(l-r, Revd Professor David Wilkinson, Jonah Graham (DU Welfare and Liberation Officer), Richard Roberts (alumnus) and Izzy Hubbert).
Pride at John’s is so much more than a day in June, but a community that is supportive and accepting. It is the celebration of personal growth and understanding, the journey of the unique discovery of our own sexuality and gender. We are a community from all walks of life, and we should take pride in everyone, no matter where they are in their own journey. It doesn’t matter if you are as out as Elton John or as far in the closet as ‘Narnia’, this formal is for you.
At this formal we celebrity diversity, we celebrate all gender expressions, sexualities, and all LGBTQIA+ folk. For those of you at this formal who are not LGBTQIA+, I want to take a moment to acknowledge the importance of allyship. Your support, respect and defence of us and our rights is vital. From calling out homophobia to helping in the push for better representation, your allyship is needed. Keep learning, keep supporting and keep fighting against bigotry of any kind. You are fighting the good fight.
At John’s, Pride is the acceptance of all and the celebration of the journey. At uni we learn, we grow and sometimes we love.
Pride at John’s is here to stay.
Be loud and be proud.”