Meet the Point Foundation’s Class of 2010
BY Advocate.com Editors
June 15 2010 2:10 PM ET
-from Salt Lake City
-pursuing a BS in sociology at Westminster College
-Phyllis Mandler & Gary Elden Point Scholarship Recipient
Cerise was raised in Salt Lake City by her gay father and his loving partners. Having grown up in an LGBT-headed household in a very conservative and strictly religious state, marginalization has always been a familiar part of her life. Although this has been challenging, she has learned to overcome heterosexism by being engaged in her community. At the age of 16, Cerise became the president of her high school’s social justice club, BOND (Building One New Dream), and simultaneously founded the Utah chapter of COLAGE: People with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Parents.
Cerise sits on the board of directors for the Inclusion Center for Community and Justice, a local nonprofit dedicated to eliminating bias and bigotry. She has a strong passion and commitment to activism; when she’s involved in her community, she feels supported and has hope for a better future. As an undergraduate at Westminster College, Cerise intends to pursue a degree in sociology and Spanish. Her hope is to go on to receive a master’s or a Ph.D. in social work. Ultimately, she plans to work directly with the queer community and other marginalized populations in order to connect them with the resources, support, and opportunities they need in order to succeed.
"I plan to make a difference in the LGBT community by standing up against heterosexism, transphobia, and all other forms of bigotry," Cerise says. "I will work hard to make my school and community more inclusive places; this will be reflected in my speech and actions. I am confident that I can effectively reach these goals with the additional skills and training I’ll receive from the Point Foundation."