Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Seems like just a short time ago Out for Good was blogging away about heroes - the everyday kind, the not-so-everyday kind, and the kind that were about to be featured in the 2010-11 Out of the Closet and Onto the Screen film series. Did you take the time at some time during this past year to ponder first year reading initiative author Henry David Thoreau's words on the topic "The hero is commonly the simplest and obscurest of men," or to consider some of the heroes featured in the film series (from Bayard Rustin to Alan Turing, and Harvey Milk to Ruth Ellis)? Were there times for you to be the hero in your own life, or in the lives of others?
This year brought successes and challenges, locally, nationally, and beyond. At one point a new, unexpected hero emerged. One that wasn't featured in the film series, but perhaps he will be someday. Daniel Hernandez, an out gay college student from the University of Arizona who had just begun an internship in the office of Representative Gabrielle Giffords, who literally leaped into action at the exact moment he was needed. He was just five days into his internship. Some dubbed Hernandez "Awesomest Intern Ever." What does Mr. Hernandez say about heroes? “I don’t think I’m a hero. I think doing something one off is not something heroic... I think the heroes are people like Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, Ron Barber, Dave Zimmerman, and Pam Simon. They are people who have dedicated their lives to public service so for them it wasn’t just a one time thing, it’s spending their entire lives trying to help others.” Another spot teaming with current and future heroes, Campus Pride LGBT Summer Leadership Camp, will feature Mr. Hernandez as a keynote speaker this year. A number of Ithaca College students have attended Campus Pride Leadership camp as student campers, interns, and peer leaders. If you're unfamiliar with this event, be sure to see what some of our IC students have said about this amazing experience or peruse other back issues of the LGBT Center newsletter for more of their stories.
Even though the academic year is through, you can still be a hero. Be a mentor and role model to younger siblings, or to peers. Be the best you can be this summer, no matter how you are spending it - whether interning, performing, taking classes, working, or plotting your next steps for the new semester. Learn more about LGBT heroes. Consider attending Campus Pride Summer Leadership Camp. The possibilities are endless.