By Brooke Manuel, Skyline Desk Chief
ALPINE-Transitioning Sul Ross State University’s familiar homecoming court titles from King and Queen to something more inclusive will be delayed until next year, officials said.
The university’s Office of Diversity Equity and Inclusion and the Sexual and Gender Alliance originally pushed for this change during Fall of 2021, SRSU officials said, but the initiative has yet to be implemented.
School officials said the delay was not the result of any controversy, despite Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s recent initiative to criminalize medical care for transgender youth, rather a life-threatening health complication to an essential member of the homecoming committee. As a result, ODEI coordinator Savannah Williamson told the Skyline she hopes the change in titles will come in 2023.
“ODEI supports inclusion across our campuses and is in favor of gender-neutral homecoming court titles as a way to celebrate all members of our community,” Williamson said. “We also believe that these changes should be adopted in a thoughtful way, rather than rushed through, especially when it comes to changes that may affect SGA and student organizations on campus. As such, we hope to work more closely with the Homecoming planning process to ensure these changes are adopted in the future.”
This move is an effort to make SRSU more inclusive to students who identify as non-binary, gender-fluid, or gender nonconforming. This change would also allow same sex couples across campus to compete for homecoming titles.
The Student Government Association sent out a questionnaire in August to decide what the new homecoming court titles should be. The four options on the questionnaire were Homecoming Royalty, Homecoming Majesties, Homecoming Monarch, and Homecoming Regents. Members of SGA did not respond to the Skyline’s requests for the results of the questionnaire.