WRC Finally Able To Expand Its Horizon
Published: Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 19:01
The Horizon group, sponsored by the Women's Resource Center (WRC), has begun to carve its place at Boston College.
Founded last semester, the group sought to "provide a space for gay, bisexual, or questioning men to discuss and seek support in a safe and encouraging environment," according to Katie Dalton, director of the WRC.
However, Dalton explained that the support-based group's late start didn't allow for the type of development it has seen this year.
"The group was founded late last spring and subsequently did not develop a strong following before the close of the academic year," she said in an e-mail. "However, this year the group began mid-fall semester and has been meeting regularly to provide a consistent meeting space for interested students and has enjoyed an increase in attendance."
Richy Villa, one of the co-facilitators of the Horizon group and GSSW '12, said that last year, the group lacked structure, something that has changed this semester.
"Horizon was founded last year, but it seems like it never really got off the ground. As far as I know, there was never an actual first meeting," he said, in an e-mail. "This year is a very exciting time for everyone involved in the group. Group members are establishing and co-creating an important outlet of support for bisexual, gay, questioning, and queer BC men. It has been personally fulfilling to see how each member has contributed to the identity of the group and defined the group's role in the BC community."
Matthew Paek, another co-facilitator of the group and GSSW '13, said that the group has also expanded its influence by expanding its membership.
"[Horizon], initially for undergraduate men, has recently opened the group up to include graduate men as well, for a more supportive environment for men who identify as GBQ at BC," Paek said in an e-mail. "This allows for undergraduate and graduate men to share their experiences and come together to discuss important issues that concern GBQ men, regardless of age."
Dalton said that Villa and Paek have done well with expanding the group from where it was last year.
"The group is facilitated by two fantastic graduate students who have been very committed to raising awareness about the group to increase participation and facilitating a dialogue that meets the needs of those students who attend the group," she said.
In the future, Villa said he hopes that Horizon will not only continue to be ready to "mobilize" in support of any of its group members, but to also establish its place at BC and continue to gain members.
"I think the most important goal for Horizon's future is to increase awareness of the group and its function in the BC community. Although our group is supportive, the group has also defined itself as a place to socialize and meet others with similar identities," he said. "Because of the success of the group and the positive feedback I have heard, it is so important that the BC community becomes aware that such a group exists and is very welcoming to new members."
The group meets weekly in McElroy 237.