Louisiana State University (LSU) is planning a “Lavender” LGBT graduation ceremony on May 14 in the Royal Cotillion Ballroom of the Student Union, according to LSU's website.
The taxpayer-funded ceremony will feature lavender stoles with gold writing, several speakers and a reception afterwards.
According to Chad Freeman, a grad assistant in the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the ceremony will be open to all students who are members of the LGBT community or consider themselves friends of the community.
The LGBT ceremony is co-sponsored by the Office of Multicultural Affairs and the campus LGBT advocacy group Spectrum, reports LSU's campus newspaper The Daily Reveille.
“Yes we’re utilizing school funding, my office is funding it out of our own pocket. It was a very small program but this year we’re trying to up our numbers and incorporate some things that haven’t been incorporated in the past utilizing stoles and a stole ceremony and keynote speakers and really large faculty and staff involvement with the support of our students,” Freeman told CampusReform.org.
However, not all students support the LGBT ceremony.
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“It sounds fiscally unsound to fund any other grad ceremonies aside our own. It’s nice that they are making an effort to make LGBT students feel welcome but at the same time it’s somewhat unfair to many other groups who want to have their own private graduation ceremonies,” said Caleb Covington, a sophomore at LSU. “It’s also not also in the spirit of budget cutting that we should probably be having right now.”