Elon University’s Gender & LGBTQIA Center is spreading love through do-it-yourself valentines tonight just in time for Valentine's Day on Tuesday.
Communications and Resources Manager for the GLC sophomore James Hemmingway and CLEAR Manager for the GLC junior Oliver McGowan are coordinating an event inspired by the theme of the holiday. They are inviting students on campus to make postcards for faculty and staff that made an impact on their Elon experience, specifically with the GLC.
“The thought was we can all come together and create valentines together,” Hemmingway said. “A big part of what we wanted to do with the event is make it not solely focused on romantic love, but also like platonic and friends.”
Hemmingway said some faculty members the GLC works with closely have been encouraged to attend by themselves or with their partners to enjoy the collage materials.
“We wanted a way to make a personalized card for somebody,” Hemmingway said.
They’ve also created mini zines — miniature magazines that display images or words and are most often self-published by one person or small group — to send along with the Valentine’s Day postcards — something McGowan is excited about.
“I asked a bunch of different people who are in the queer community — some of them are my friends, some of them were GLC staff members, some of them were faculty at Elon, a few professors — of just what queer love meant to them or what it looked like to them, or how they see it moving in the world,” McGowan said.
McGowan cut those notes out into small hearts.
Hemmingway wants tonight’s event to celebrate love in the most general sense through arts and crafts.
“We’re lucky to work in an office that is very filled with compassion and really lovely people,” Hemmingway said. “I want to be able to extend that outwards.”
The event is the first time the GLC is doing a larger event for Valentine’s Day. While the event is centered around the queer community, all are welcome to attend. Both Hemmingway and McGowan want to create a space for people on campus to engage in a low-stakes environment.
Hemmingway said Valentine’s Day can be emotionally charged, so they hope this event is a space that can bring people together.
“I think especially within the queer community love is so important and compassion is so important for each other, so having the ability to come together in this way is going to be just so much fun because it's always fun when we all get together,” McGowan said.
The event will be held tonight from 5 to 7 p.m. in Moseley 206.