In early May 2016, Adelphi University raised its first Pride flag as a permanent representation of the University's support for and inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community. Its appearance on campus was a combined effort of the LGBTQ+ Task Force, the LGBTQ+ and Allies Committee and the LGBTQ+ Empowerment Group.
Three years later, in May 2019, the Transgender Pride flag joined the LGBTQ+ flag. In collaboration with the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, this idea was pioneered by Mena Sposito ’10, an advocate for transgender awareness, education and rights. By displaying the flag, “Adelphi sends a powerful message that transgender people deserve to be here; we deserve to be respected, included and safe,” Sposito said.
Today, we proudly display a new flag: the Progress Pride flag. This inclusive design represents the trans community, people of color, those who have lived with and died from HIV/AIDS as well as all members of the LGBTQ+ community.
The story of how these flags came to campus started as pure happenstance. According to Scott Zotto ’03, MSW ’09, coordinator of substance abuse counseling and prevention programing, one of the flags was torn off the poles outside Hagedorn Hall by a strong gust of wind. “The Adelphi Pride Committee, LGBTQ+ Task Force and the Gender and Sexuality Alliance saw an opportunity to propose an updated version of the flag,” he said.
“Although we were all aware of the existence of the new flag designs, it was first-year student Lauren Blake who declared how important it would be to have the Progressive Pride flag installed,” Zotto continued. “We unanimously agreed that the more modern and inclusive Progressive Pride flag, designed by digital designer Daniel Quasar, be chosen as a replacement. The Progress Pride flag, in one design, portrays multiple intersecting identities. This can be a truly powerful symbol of welcome and support to Adelphi’s LGBTQIA+ community.”