A Gift to Nurture Pride

David GubserThe Pride Center at San Diego State University has received a $100,000 gift from San Diego donor David Gubser.

Gubser committed another $100,000 to the university's LGBT studies program, the second of its kind in North America and the first in the California State University system. A staunch supporter of LGBT centers and organizations in Southern California, Gubser recently decided to extend his advocacy to college campuses.

"At this time, given the terrible events in Orlando, people need to become more educated about the LGBT community," Gubser said. "I couldn't think of a better way to accomplish that goal than through a gift to SDSU."

Gubser's gift will create an endowed scholarship for LGBT majors and will expand the Pride Center's programming to include academic mentoring, guest speakers, health and safety training and possible queer leadership conferences.

SDSU created its interdisciplinary LGBT studies program in January 2012 in the College of Arts and Letters. The university also offers a minor and a graduate-level certificate in LGBT studies.

"I am delighted by the generosity and foresight of David Gubser to endow a scholarship for LGBT studies students as well as to the Pride Center," said Esther Rothblum, LGBT studies adviser at SDSU. "As we mourn the victims of the tragic shooting at a gay bar in Orlando, it is evident that now, more than ever, there is an urgent need for scholarship and activism that furthers knowledge of LGBT issues."

SDSU has ranked among the top 25 LGBT-friendly universities in the nation for six consecutive years. The ranking is based on the Campus Pride Index, a tool that compares LGBT-friendly policies, programs and practices on college campuses. Christopher Lujan, Pride Center coordinator, said several students have visited the center in the last few days to ask about the services it provides.

"Often students want to go to a space where they are connected to the community," Lujan said. "The Pride Center provides a space for all students to build a support system among the LGBTQ+ community at SDSU. Our services range from weekly support groups to utilization of our LGBTQ+ resources on and off campus."