|LGBT Sports Panel from left to right: Anna Aagenes, Jeff Ward, Pat Griffin, and Sherri Murrell|
As someone who never dreamed that she could be both an athlete and “out” as LGBT, this year’s National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Equity and Inclusion Forum has had a special significance for me. It hit me immediately after I spoke to the audience about my story, a story that years ago, I could not have imagined telling to the NCAA.
In high school, when I came out as bisexual, it seemed impossible to think that I could be a successful athlete and “out” about my sexual orientation. There were simply no role models for young athletes like myself with dreams of becoming pro athletes. Not only were there no role models, but no one was talking about issues related to being L, G, B, or T on one’s sports team.
As part of the panel “Out LGBT Student-Athletes and Coaches: Coming to A Campus Near You”, I had the privilege of speaking to an audience of dedicated coaches, administrators, and fellow athlete-activists about my experience as a Division I, LGBT athlete at the University of Pennsylvania. Our panel was moderated by the incredible Pat Griffin, a LGBT sports pioneer and GLSEN Sports Project director, which promotes LGBT education for K-12 students.
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