Stonewall House Serves as a Brave Zone on LVC's Campus
For students who identify as part of the LGBTQIA+ community, a welcoming retreat can be found at Stonewall House. Currently housed in Centre Hall, Stonewall House was established as a place of support for students on campus, but it has grown to be more than that.
According to their mission statement, Stonewall House “strives[s] to provide a brave zone for LGBTQIA+ persons and allies to support, educate, advocate, and affirm all identities.” Support for the house has grown since its inception during the 2015–16 academic year. Previously housed in Sheridan East, Stonewall was home to eight students last year. Following their move to Centre Hall–which can house 14 students—their numbers grew to 11 residents and they hope to fill the final three spots during the spring semester.
Jillian Eastwood ’19, an exercise science major, has been the house leader since the middle of last semester. Eastwood does not identify within the LGBTQIA+ community, but has been a strong ally for those who do. This ally-ship is what led her to pursue becoming house leader.
Another ally in the house is Brianna Metsger ’19.
“I wanted to live in Stonewall House because advocating for the LGBTQIA+ community has always been important to me,” Metsger said. “As an ally, I want to do as much as I can for those who do not have the same rights as I.”
Eastwood shared a similar sentiment.
“I hope having Stonewall House will help to educate our campus and bring more awareness to the community,” Eastwood said. “We want people to know that they always have a safe place at our house or at our programs.”
Living in Stonewall House is about more than just advocacy, for some it is a place of refuge.
“Due to personal experiences with living in a dorm, Stonewall House has provided me with the atmosphere to feel confident in being my true self,” said Neal Rose ’18, a global studies, Spanish, and criminal justice triple major.
As part of being a special interest house on the Lebanon Valley College campus, Stonewall holds open community hours from 9 a.m.–10 p.m. daily when anyone can stop in to chat. The house also sponsors programs focused on education, advocacy, and fun. Upcoming events include “Understanding the different LGBTQIA+ flags with pumpkin decorating” on Oct. 24 and a Trans* Vigil on Nov. 20. Additional information regarding upcoming events can be found on the house’s Facebook page @lvcstonewall.
Those wishing to become involved in Stonewall House’s mission can email Jillian Eastwood at firstname.lastname@example.org to join the house email list. This email can also be used if a student needs someone to talk to regarding LGBTQIA+ issues.
Megan Marron, Marketing & Communications Intern