This spring, Atlanta activist Feroza Syed will present both a campus-wide lecture and a more intimate, student advocacy conversation as part of Oglethorpe’s CORE lecture series. Both will cover topics of LGBTQ+ issues, intersectionality and social justice.
Syed has been heavily involved in LGBTQ+ advocacy in the Atlanta area. After coming out in a viral facebook post as a trans woman living in anonymity (the post received more than 3000 likes and a 1000 comments), she began her advocacy work in earnest. Most recently, she was made one of the appointees to Atlanta Mayor Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms’s LGBTQ Advisory Board for the City of Atlanta.
Additionally, she has worked as a facilitator for PFLAG John’s Creek and with numerous organizations in the Atlanta area, such as THC (Trans Housing Coalition), Asian Q & A (Queer and Adolescent), and DesiQ Diaspora to create a safe space for Asian and Pacific Islander youth. She has spoken at schools and colleges, has been featured in magazines and articles, and recently hosted the Stonewall Pride celebrations in Atlanta in June.
In 2018, she was appointed AIDAtlanta Ambassador and in 2019, she was Grand Marshal for Atlanta’s 50th Pride celebrations. She works with groups locally to help with intersectionality, specifically cultural and religious background issues targeting the Asian LGBTQ community, in order to build a safe space for that community. She also spends her time bringing light to the struggles of the trans and LGBTQ community, specifically for people of color and LGBTQ youth.
On Tuesday, Mar. 23 at 6 p.m., Syed’s campus-wide Core lecture will discuss the many challenges the trans community is facing today, including the alarming rate of violence and murder, homelessness and healthcare disparities. She will also share an overview of her work with Mayor Bottoms’s inaugural LGBTQ+ Advisory Board, as well as her engagement with other boards such as the THC (Trans Housing Coalition), DesiQ Diaspora and Real Estate Alliance. Finally, Syed will discuss opportunities for OU community involvement in political activism and local trans and queer activism.
On Wednesday, Apr. 20 at 6 p.m., Syed will give a more intimate conversation meant for student advocates at Oglethorpe. She will share her story as a Muslim, an immigrant and a trans woman of color. She will also discuss her transition story and coming out a second time through her widely shared Facebook post. Following her presentation, Syed will host a live Q&A with participants.
Both lectures will be hosted live on Zoom. Visit OUConnect for the link.