In collaboration with National Student Pride, and to mark the beginning of LGBT History Month, the ‘What it Takes’ event series discussed ‘What it Takes to be LGBTI and Proud with a panel of alumni speakers from a diverse range of LGBTI backgrounds.

The series feature successful Westminster alumni each month to inspire students and recent graduates and give them the opportunity to network with each other.

On Friday 2 February five Westminster alumni took part in a panel discussion to share their personal experiences and the issues they have faced as LGBTI individuals. The panel included UWSU LGBTI Society President Nikki Hayden, Radio Production alumnus Jamie Wareham, Law Alumnus Anick Soni, Radio Production alumna and Press Officer for the National Student Pride Charlie-Ann Mathers as well as Housing Practice graduate Shayne Brown.

Each of them shared a ten-minutes presentation and were asked questions by the host as well as the audience in a Q&A and during a post-event refreshments and networking session.

Topics raised included the definitions of LGBTI terminologies, issues commonly faced in the LGBTI community and the role of LGBTI media and the Home Office in recognising the diversity of sexuality and gender identity-based cultures.

Speakers also shared their unique stories of coming out, as bisexual, transgender or gay, amongst their families and friends, and explained how they learnt to be comfortable with who they are.

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Charity worker and Law graduate Anick Soni said during the event: “The University of Westminster is very good at providing support networks for the LGBTI community. The more you share your story the more people will share theirs. The best place to do this is at University.”

The next event, as part of the ‘What It Takes’ alumni event series, will take place on 12 February and will feature Business Administration alumna, Executive Career Coach, Author and entrepreneur, Jenny Garrett in ‘What it Takes to be a confident public speaker.’.

Find out more about the ‘What it takes’ series organised by the Westminster Alumni team.

Find out more about the next ‘What it takes’ event entitled ‘What is takes to be a confident public speaker’.

Watch the replay of the ‘What it Takes to be LGBTI and proud’ event.

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