- Created on 27 February 2015
This year National Student Pride celebrates its tenth year in fabulous pink style.
Hosted in London, this year the event has travelled the nation after humble beginnings, forming in response to an extremist group seeking to impose their bigoted beliefs on student campus at Oxford Brookes University in 2005.
The Christian Union’s ‘Homosexuality and the Bible’ talk, led by a trainee vicar was ill informed and homophobic. So in retaliation, Student Pride set up a fair debate that included progressive voices, a Vicar and a Rabbi on how being gay and religion really sat. The Christian Union’s event portrayed that anyone who is lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender was born immoral and deficient - Student Pride however believes faith and sexuality can sit side by side to fight discrimination and prejudice together.
Since then, the event has grown exponentially. Instead of a march, Student Pride now centres around a daytime festival, where in addition to the usual stalls, live music and a bar, we also have a series of debates.
Student Pride continues this mantra in its 10th year and has chosen to hold its 2015 event at the University of Westminster, which allowed notoriously homophobic Sheikh Haitham al Haddad to speak for two years running. Sheikh Haitham al Haddad to speak for two years running. In previous years, the event has been in Oxford, Manchester, spent many great years by the sea in Brighton and now is in London.
For Tom Guy, Student Pride’s president, highlights in the past ten years include: having Ronan Keating come along and having Evan Davis, top-BBC-journo-and-out-gay-man as a regular panelist. But perhaps Tom’s proudest moment, was when this year, the event was able to proclaim being the biggest LGBT student careers fair that includes a diverse range of employers, from the likes of Google to the RAF.
2015 will be a special year too, with Oscar winning Milk screenwriter (And Tom Daley’s boyfriend) Dustin Lance Black being the star of the Attitude panel on LGBT representation in Film and TV. The panel will also hear from executive Producer of Eastenders Dominic Treadwell-Collins, Emmerdale Star Elicya Ayo and the incredible Cucumber and Banana star Bethany Black who played Helen in the show.
That's not to mention an important focus on the general election. The event launches #VotePride, which is all about the importance of voting as a unified LGBT voice. Evan Davis will chair a political debate calling on the Conservatives, Lib Dems, Labour, Greens and UKIP to set out their pledges for the LGBT community ahead of the general election.
On top of all of that, even though it's not Wednesday, you can see the event climax in hot pink style with the G-A-Y Mean Girls Prom.