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June 1, 2024 – June 30, 2024
Location: Hubbard Case

LGBTQIA+ students at Duke have actively advocated and openly built community for over 50 years, beginning with the founding of the first University-sanctioned queer student group, the Duke Gay Alliance (DGA), in 1972. One of the early demands made by the DGA to then-President Terry Sanford was to include sexual orientation within the University's non-discrimination policy. Sanford rejected their request, and the policy did not include sexual orientation as a protected class until 1988.

The group also advocated for inclusion of LGBTQIA+ students in ROTC, employee benefits for same-sex couples, and the hiring of professional staff for the University Center for Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Life (now the Center for Gender and Sexual Diversity), among other issues affecting the queer Duke community. They also invited prominent LGBTQIA+ speakers to campus, distributed information about safe sex and the AIDS epidemic, and maintained a collection of local and national resources for LGBTQIA+ students in the age before the internet.

Over the years, with the genesis of inclusion within the queer community, the Duke Gay Alliance underwent several name changes, transitioning to Duke Gay and Lesbian Alliance; Duke Gay, Bisexual, and Lesbian Association (1994); Gothic Queers (1997); and Alliance of Queer Undergraduates at Duke (AQUADuke) in 2002. By Spring 2008, AQUADuke merged with Duke Allies to establish Blue Devils United, the current LGBTQIA+ student group on campus.

Displayed in the exhibit case are various iterations of published newsletters, including the Gay Morning Star (1970s), The Rising Star (early 1980s), Aurora (late 1980s), and Outlines (1990s-2000s).

Four newsletters from LGBTQIA+ student group and exhibit labels inside the exhibit case.