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Q&A: LGBTQ

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Aiden Powell is program coordinator at Purdue University’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) Center. He received his B.A. in history and anthropology from Texas A&M University in 2012 and is currently completing his M.S. in anthropology with a focus on LGBTQ student health.

Q: What is the “Q” in LGBTQ?

A: The “Q” stands for either “queer” or “questioning”. It is meant to broaden the umbrella and create a more inclusive environment for those who don’t self-identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT), or may be in a process of discovering their own gender or sexual orientation. “Queer” is actually an architectural term for angles that were different from what was expected in design blueprints. Over time, however, it became a derogatory slur to describe LGBT people.

Q: When did people adopt the “Q”?

A: People began to reclaim the term “queer” during a process of awakening or empowerment in the 1990s when you saw groups like Act Up demonstrate publicly against the high cost of HIV drugs and multiple LGBT marches on Washington, D.C., as well as pressure to expand the LGBT acronym to include more identities. “Queer” covered people who fell outside a non-binary definition of sexuality and gender.

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Diploma Mill University

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When institutions of higher learning do not provide ongoing job and career placement services to their graduates, the industry fails to optimize the same alumni relations they seek to tap for fundraising activities.

When each of my alma maters sends me letters in the mail asking for money, I generally ask myself: what have you done for me lately? In other words, why do the schools from which I graduated expect me to supply a stream annual dividends on their investment in me when the reality is I paid these institutions handsomely for four years of education?

I’m not that gift that keeps on giving. In fact, universities give their opponents a huge opportunity to claim that college degrees these days aren’t worth the paper their written on when the importance of lifetime learning becomes more evident during times of long-term joblessness nationally.

Redefining Human Resources

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Why the human resources “profession” has become one of the most overlooked drags on the U.S. economy. Let’s combine commerce, labor and education into one Cabinet department.

We read time after time about what to do or what not to say on a job application or during an employment interview. Pages of advice have been written offering explanations as to why people fail to obtain jobs at big American companies. Nine times out of 10, these articles are written from the perspective of what employers want. But in the 21st Century, employers have become multinational conglomerates using information technology and bureaucratic personnel to keep their corporate machines running.

Rarely is the competence of human resource professionals or the efficiency of HR departments critiqued for reasons why the corporate job market has been so painfully sluggish when it comes to identifying and hiring talent. By partnering with postsecondary schools, HR can climb out of a void created by an outdated model of management versus labor.