Showcasing Scholars We’re Proud of During Pride Month

June 1, 2023

Graduate Center students, faculty, and alumni are leaders in LGBTQ scholarship and activism.

Proud GC gay scholars
Clockwise from upper left: Ness Brown, Amber Musser, Lauren Esposito, and Jawanza James Williams

From the founder of 500 Queer Scientists to advocates for same-sex marriage, the Graduate Center is proud of these scholars in June and year-round. 

Wiston Rodriguez
Wiston Rodriguez

In his dissertation, Ph.D. candidate Wiston Rodriguez (Psychology) zeroes in on LGBTQ employees and the unique challenges they face in the workplace.

Biology alumna Lauren Esposito in the lab
Lauren Esposito

Alumna Lauren Esposito (Ph.D. ’11, Biology) is a leading scorpion researcher and founder of 500 Queer Scientists, a visibility campaign for LGBTQ scientists

Incoming Student 2022 - Jawanza James Williams (Photo credit: Alex Irklievski)
Jawanza James Williams

Jawanza James Williams (Political Science), an avowed “radical queer, prison abolitionist, socialist, feminist, Christian,” shares how he spoke at a panel at the Graduate Center about AIDS, inspiring him to apply to be a student years later

Vanessa Brown Incoming Astrophysics Student 2022, Photo credit: Alex Irklievski
Ness Brown

Astrophysics master’s student Ness Brown sees a chance to be a role model as a non-binary scientist. “You can have your gender bias against you, your race bias against you, and you can not come from a certain background,” Brown says. “You could have all the cards stacked the other way, and you can still succeed. You can still be a part of this community and be welcomed in this community.”

Tanya Domi, Photo Credit: Alex Irklievski
Tanya Domi

Tanya Domi, director of media relations at the Graduate Center, talks in this podcast about her experience on the National LGBTQ Task Force as director of their military freedom project to repeal the ban on gay, lesbian, and bisexual people serving in the military. 

LGBTQ rights activist Adrian Coman and his husband Claibourne Robert Hamilton against a watercolor rainbow Pride flag
Adrian Coman

Adrian Coman, a human rights activist who is at the center of a court battle in the European Union about same-sex marriage, talks about the struggle for LGBTQ rights in Europe and around the world on the International Horizons podcast.

Amber Musser Award
Amber Musser and the cover of her book, Keywords for Gender and Sexuality Studies

Keywords for Gender and Sexuality Studies, co-edited by Professor Amber Musser (English), was included in Choice’s 2022 Outstanding Academic Titles list.

David A. Gerstner - Professor -  profile photo
David A. Gerstner

Professor David A. Gerstner (Film Studies, GC/Staten Island College) examines film directors, writers, and queer theory in his new book, “Queer Imaginings: On Writing and Cinematic Friendship.”

Charlie Markbreiter and his book cover

Ph.D. candidate Charlie Markbreiter’s (English) new book Gossip Girl Fanfic Novella reflects his scholarship in trans studies

Headshot of George Takei
George Takei

George Takei, star of StarTrek and equally distinguished for his social justice activism for LGBTQ rights, receives an honorary degree at Commencement on June 2.

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