Advisor, Mayra Salgado and student hold award certificates from RU Proud organization.

Roosevelt University students have been redefining the meaning of community through their commitment to student activities and organizations. RU Proud has been one of those prominent student organizations, with student leaders and staff advisors rising to the occasion to meet their community’s evolving needs. This LGBTQ+ student advocacy organization has met challenges post-COVID by fortifying their commitment to community. When in-person meetings became impossible, the diligence of Roosevelt students, faculty and staff held organizations like RU Proud together. The pandemic exasperated that issue by challenging students to redefine what community meant when they could not have in-person meetings. Today, RU Proud is an exemplar of what Roosevelt has to offer, both inside and outside of the classroom.

In her capacity as the Associate Director of Student Engagement, Kayla Linsner works tirelessly to ensure student organizations like RU Proud have the assets they need to flourish. This includes hosting student leadership trainings and helping secure faculty or staff advisors in addition to ensuring student leaders have the resources and materials needed for the events they host. Maintaining student membership and leadership can be challenging as students balance academic and personal life challenges. One common experience is ensuring that as student leaders graduate, there is a steady stream of students to assume leadership positions. 

Current RU Proud president Angelina “Ang” Lambert represents the Roosevelt values of community building and activism. When Ang transferred to the University, they were eager to get involved with student activities. At that time, the outgoing RU Proud president had recently graduated, and Ang fearlessly stepped up to assume the role. As RU Proud president, Ang has been responsible for getting the word out about general meetings, events and helping fill the executive board with members. At that same time, Mayra Salgado became their new staff advisor. As a social worker with the Division of Student Affairs, Mayra was excited to help provide support to LGBTQ+ students at Roosevelt. Together, Ang, Mayra and members of RU Proud were able to provide safe spaces for community meetings and events. One of their most recent accomplishments included redefining the mission statement. As defined by their diverse student body:

“RU Proud is an intersectional safe space for LGBTQ+ students at Roosevelt University. We provide educational, informative, inclusive programming to raise awareness for LGBTQ+ students and faculty on campus. We are a space for accomplices of the LGBTQ+ community but focuses on the empowerment of LGBTQ+ students. We are invested in highlighting and celebrating the intersectionalities of the LGBTQ+ student body at Roosevelt University.”

As a student advocacy organization, RU Proud hosts many kinds of events. They regularly host movie nights, trivia tournaments and fun costume parties. One Roosevelt community-wide event is the annual Accomplice-ship Training. Formally known as allyship training, this event serves as an opportunity for University students, faculty and staff to learn strategies for supporting their LGBTQ+ community members. Another successful event is RU Proud’s annual Transgender Day of Remembrance, which highlights the challenges and triumphs of the community’s most vulnerable population. In acknowledgment of their hard work, RU Proud was voted Student Organization of the Year at the Student Leadership Awards for the 2022-2023 academic year. Advisor Mayra Salgado was acknowledged for her outstanding commitment and was awarded Faculty/Staff Advisor of the Year. Today, as RU Proud leadership gears up for another exciting year, President Ang encourages any interested student to join RU Proud on Laker Connect, and to follow them on Instagram to keep up to date on all their exciting new endeavors.

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