From: Out in STEM
Date: February 1
Subject: oSTEM: BHM + GMM This Friday

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Queers Read This!

Tomorrow is groundhog day, do you think Phil will see his shadow? [reply here]

    Aaand it would not be an oSTEM newsletter without some kinks (not the good kind), last week we forgot to link to the actual survey mentioned multiple times throughout the email. You can now find it here. 
    Winter weather is officially here! Along with it, however, so do seasonal illnesses. Make sure to stay wrapped up, masked, and healthy. If you are sick, it’s okay to sleep in! If you’re sick and come to our GMM this Friday, we’ll be flattered, but also swinging because we don’t like friendly fire in the form of germ biowarfare.
    Also, you can now answer our lil opener questions! Submit through the link in brackets next to it, and you could be featured in our next newsletter. Your response could be one word, a heated story, a whole lie, etc. As usual, submissions can be made anonymously. I (kevin) will coerce the other EBoard members into responding to you through the coming newsletters!

This Week

    Liven up, people! Our second GMM of the semester is this week!! Join us this Friday, February 3, from 5-6 pm at our usual Genesee 308 location. Per oSTEM policy, we will have snacks ready for you to munch on throughout the meeting. Unfortunately, due to some budget cuts (thank president mangelsdorf), we are unable to do our usual ‘pack your entire backpack’ approach, but still will be bringing more than enough for you to get full on throughout the GMM! 

Coming Up

- Feedback Survey Form *Now* Live: Link
    Survey link is now actually embedded in this section! Sorry for the oversight last week, how embarrassing.
- oSTEM Virtual Career & Grad School Expo: February 22, 2023 @ 4-8 pm ET
    Our national oSTEM organization is holding a career + grad school expo with lots of sponsors. They will be sharing opportunities like internships, summer research positions, grad school programs, and more! Read more and register here.
- Northeastern University Visit: February 7, 2023
    The Roux Institute is one of Northeastern University’s newest campuses in its global university system, located just 90 minutes away from Boston in Portland, Maine. They will be coming next month to talk about their graduate program specifics, co-ops available, and their scholarship awards. 
    Skylar Cummings will be at the Spring Career Fair hosted by the Greene Center on February 7, she has also offered her contact info (found through the GIM slides) to oSTEM members and would love to get to know you. Note that they are primarily focused on connecting with seniors applying for grad school. Here are some flyers with more information. College Visit. Graduate Programs.
- oSTEM Slack Group: Link 
    In order to further help us not overwhelm you with the size of these emails, we have set up a Slack group! Please join to get insider info, connect with other members, and have better group contact than CCC (also because I cannot figure out how CCC works, the survey should be evidence of that lol). 
Note: Link expires in 30 days.
- Spring Semester GMMs
    Our regular schedule has been set for the semester, meeting bi-weekly on Fridays from 5-6 pm in Genesee 308. The next following meeting dates are February 17, March 3, March 17, March 31, and April 14.
- oSTEM National Membership: Link 
    National Membership gives you access to all of oSTEM's resources & scholarships, and it takes (max) 5 minutes to register. There is also a ton of other information to explore!
oSTEM-Recommended Campus Resources/Organizations
- UR Additional Funding Opportunities List
    Compiled by the UR Fellowship Office, here is a list of even more databases you can look through. They’ve added a quick description for each website’s area of focus to help you find the one that best fits your fellowship interests. These databases are not just limited to STEM fellowships, they also include fields like creating writing, visual arts, international studies, and more!
    Admittedly, it can quickly become overwhelming/convoluted even with the compiled list. If you’d like us to invite a Fellowship Office staff member to a future GMM and guide us through, not just the application process, but also the search process, that’d be another great use of our Feedback Form! We’d also be more than happy to reach out and connect you one-on-one if you’d prefer! 
- UR Basic Needs Hub
    The University’s Basic Needs Hub assists students in crisis/need through either financial assistance or connecting you with campus/community resources. They are always available and open to *all* enrolled UR students, regardless of your financial situation (although they might ask for financial aid documentation). Do not hesitate to reach out to them if you are ever in need of assistance!! You have a right to this resource. Find more information about them here, and their request form here.
    Note from Kevin: There is no shame in asking for help, you are more than deserving of it! I come from a very, very low-income household For my first two-ish college years, I refrained from reaching out because I did not know it was an option, then because I wasn’t sure if it would affect me (ie. taxes, tuition, etc.), and lastly I questioned if I actually deserved it. Since then, I’ve learned a lot (and have contacted them a lot), I am available if you have any questions or would like guidance/pointers in accessing these resources. Being a Kearns Scholar also helps because an advisor from the Kearns Center oversees the BNH process. Since you’re a Scholar, chances are you know each other and they can advocate more personally for you.
Outside Opportunities
- National Society of Professional Engineers Scholarship: Due April 1, 2023 
    Offers $5k scholarships to rising juniors in engineering (and closely-related fields), as well as mentorship connections, conference access, and more. Read more here.

In The News

• HBO’s The Last of Us: Link
    HBO is making headlines with their new series The Last of Us, now on its third episode, involving a gay couple, a virus, and a game. Honestly, I haven’t looked into it but I’ve heard good reviews and the virus not being literally/metaphorically HIV, is a nice change of pace. In an effort to not appear young and hip, I love this series! Must watch!! 
Note from Ellie: As someone who actually DID watch it, I was sobbing, crying, clutching my partner screaming, ‘Do you love me as much as Bill loves Frank?!?!?!’ Quite literally one of the best episodes of television in modern history. Highly recommend <3
Note from Kevin: You know what, now I retract my recommendation…smh 
• FDA Announces New Blood Donation Guidelines: Link
    The FDA has updated its guidelines in determining if a person is eligible to donate blood, guidelines which have historically only amplified stigma against LGBTQ+ people (or sex variants). While these new guidelines no longer outright ban “MSM” blood donations, they are still deferring donations from people on PrEP (or be off of it for at least 3 months). Numerous LGBTQ+ advocates and medical experts have suggested science-based, individualized risk assessment (instead of the current, longstanding discriminatory donation guidelines) for decades. This is heading in the right direction, but disappointingly slowly/late.
• Yeshiva University’s Ban On Its Pride Alliance: Link
    The religious institution, Yeshiva University, has been in the public’s eye following their ban of a student organization Pride Alliance shortly after they tried establishing it on campus. YU firmly states that they are not discriminating against LGBTQ+ students. Simultaneously, they took the students to courts, and when they all ruled in favor of the Pride Alliance, YU tried to get the US Supreme Court on it, but they did not take the case because that is now how the court system works. As comedic as this seems, however, it is apparent that higher education is not immune to ignorance and discrimination on multiple avenues. 
    A takeaway from this situation is not that oSTEM should be happy to even be recognized as a campus club because we very much deserve our space, our resources, our queer gatherings, etc. If anything, we deserve more! It is not selfish or hard-headed, we recognize it is a constructed privilege to exist and a direct result of those who came (and fought) before us, but the dues of our history are adding up, and existence & recognition are not enough.

The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House 

 Those of us who stand outside the circle of this society's definition of acceptable women; those of us who have been forged in the crucibles of difference -- those of us who are poor, who are lesbians, who are Black, who are older -- know that survival is not an academic skill. It is learning how to take our differences and make them strengths. For the master's tools will never dismantle the master's house. They may allow us temporarily to beat him at his own game, but they will never enable us to bring about genuine change. And this fact is only threatening to those women who still define the master's house as their only source of support.
-Audre Lorde (essay link)
    Seeing as today is the start of Black History Month, it’s only fitting that we focus (even more than our usual BIPOC-mindful queer, civil & cultural roots) on the works by Black, queer people. 
    Writer, activist, and professor, Audre Lorde described herself as a "Black, lesbian, mother, warrior, poet." Her pioneer work in queer theory, radical feminism, and civil rights activism is extensive and serves as a great resource for intersectional academia. Her essay, The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House (1984) is an underappreciated gem. 
    Lorde questions the structures of power we just decorate differently and call ‘inclusive’. She acknowledges that these efforts to equality are an attempt at improvement, but keeps confined by still adopting tools of the oppressor. Lorde critiques the push for tolerance of our differences, seeing as this ‘solution’ just washes away our differences. 
    The message that "Everyone is equal and everyone should be allowed to achieve the same success as you,” sounds progressive, but its standardization of “success” and values does not dismantle or even acknowledge alternative definitions of success. We shouldn’t have to work towards assimilation, yet we see its link to survival/”success” even in progressive movements. Lorde saw firsthand how feminist spaces reused the oppressor’s tools through their fight for equality, with the definition of “equality” remaining unquestioned. 
    I want to expand on this a little more, but that’ll have to wait for next week since this newsletter is being sent a little late in the day. 
See you Friday! (be there or be *square emoji*)

oSTEM Bi-Weekly GMM Logo


oSTEM Bi-Weekly GMM

Friday, February 3
5:00pm - 6:00pm
Genesee 308, 500 Joseph C. Wilson Blvd, Rochester, NY 14627, United States
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Our bi weekly member meeting



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