Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services (iSMSS)

Andre Grace is speaking about his new institute at the University of Alberta, iSMSS (Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services), and he explained how he first started doing this work. Quite interesting work. Nice twist with referring to at risk as at promise. Andre always gives me something to think about. He makes a good point about how he now writes for the mainstream, and then slides queer into it. This is a thread which we spoke about earlier in the pre-conference, and I think many issues can be addressed in this light, especially when considering issues of justice and adult education.

Interesting reflection about acceptance and teaching it. As Andre is from Canada, he does not need to speak about acceptance of people; but rather about levels of respect, rights, safety, and security. He blends law and lawsuits into “tolerance” work with educators, rather than speaking about issues directly. In other words, meet people with giving them their WIIFM, especially if the WIIFM involves not getting sued.

Note to self; consider the use of language to best  help the audience accept your message. While I do normally think about this when i teach organizational communication, I do not normally think about this when considering educational issues and focusing on critical pedagogy.

Really interesting work with Camp fYrefly, which I have heard of over the years and which helps youth who struggle with issues around gender and sexual identity, which is referred to as sexual minority status in Canada. Nicely progressive.