FAQ

Below you will find a list of questions that are commonly asked by new members or people trying to learn about the GLBTAU. Clicking on each question brings you to that response. If you want to know all of the information, you can just keep scrolling through the page!

  1. Iowa City
    1. Are there alternatives to the bar scene?
    2. Is there a Gay Bar?
    3. Are there any groups for GLBTA teenagers?
    4. Are there any pride shops?
  2. The University of Iowa
    1. What is it like being GLBT in the dorms?
    2. What should I do if I am harassed for being GLBT?
    3. Are there any groups or events specifically for GLBT Graduate students?
    4. Can I major in Queer Studies?
    5. What is Safezone?
  3. The GLBTAU
    1. Does it cost anything to join the GLBTAU?
    2. Can allies come to GLBTAU meetings?
    3. How can I get involved?
    4. If I go to a GLBTAU event, will that "out" me?
    5. I don't want to be involved just yet, where can I just make some friends?
    6. What is the Executive Board?
    7. How involved does the GLBTAU get with local politics?
    8. Was the name of this group formally GLBTU?

Iowa City

Are there alternatives to the bar scene?

Absolutely. While at times it may seem that Iowa City has nothing but bars, there is usually something else going on. As far as a GLBT alternative, check the calendar to see what's going on. Often there are events at Hancher Auditorium, the BIJOU, or in the theater building that you may not otherwise hear of.
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Is there a Gay Bar?

Yes, sort of. While Iowa City's "gay bar" (The Alley Cat) has changed names and is no longer officially a "gay bar," it remains the unofficial gay bar in the community. This bar is now known as "Studio 13," and is located at 13 S. Linn St., on the alley side of the historic Linn Street Square building, near downtown. There are, however, several gay friendly bars.
Studio 13, like most bars in Iowa City, is open to everyone age 21 and up.
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Are there any groups for GLBTA teenagers?

Yes, United Action for Youth (UAY) has a gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, questioning, and allied (GLBTQA) youth group. It is intended for all youth, ages 13 to 19 regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.
It meets on Mondays (weekly) at 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
United Action for Youth, Inc.
410 Iowa Ave.
Iowa City, IA 52240
(319) 338-7518
UAYGLBTQA@aol.com
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Are there any pride shops?

The newest addition to our Iowa City community is "The Tool Box" ( www.facebook.com/ICToolBox ) which is the Official supplier of Iowa City Pride's Rainbow Gear and  also has a community space where groups/people are welcome to meet and hang out. There is internet access, furniture, and drinks (sometimes snacks) & it is loacted at 128.5 E. Washington (Above Jimmy Johns).  
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The University of Iowa

What is it like being GLBT in the dorms?

One of the biggest concerns for new students is undoubtedly dealing with dorm life. For GLBT students, this can be the most traumatic part of leaving home, but it doesn't have to be. Here are a few tips and some information about GLBT dorm issues.

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What should I do if I am harassed for being GLBT?

First off, keep in mind that in Iowa City most of us receive little harassment. Running into a profane drunken frat boy isn't terribly uncommon, but beyond a few passing obscenities on the street you won't usually have much trouble. But, here is what to do if something worse happens:

We just want to stress that, in general, harassment is not very common or serious in Iowa City. As long as you use common sense and don't go looking for trouble, you'll be okay.
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Are there any groups or events specifically for GLBT Graduate students?

Yes, there are currently two such groups on campus One, Outlaws, is intended for law school students only, while the other, UI Graduate Dykes, is available for all lesbian graduate students.
As always, the GLBTAU welcomes all UI students, including graduate students.
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Can I major in Queer Studies?

At some Colleges and Universities a program specifically geared for Queer Studies is offered (the University of Minnesota, for example). Iowa does not offer a program specifically in Queer Studies, however it does offer the Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies (GWSS) program which includes several courses that cover GLBTA issues, as well as the GLBTA community. Additionally, it offers a broad view of human sexuality, which incorporates well into a variety of career paths. You can major and minor in GWSS, for more information visit their website!
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What is Safezone?

Safezone is a campus-wide program that is intended to promote the inclusion and acceptance of all GLBT students. The participants of this program volunteer to be visible allies and to help provide resources and support for all members of the University. More information about this program can be found at the UI Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Staff and Faculty Association's page on Safezone.
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The GLBTAU

Does it cost anything to join the GLBTAU?

No! Joining the GLBTAU is completely free. It is a common misconception that we collect membership dues. Unfortunately, this seems to have been caused by our old constitution. At some point in our 35+ year history, the GLBTAU did collect dues, but not anymore.
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Can allies come to GLBTAU meetings?

Yes! Allies are always welcome at any and all GLBTAU events! The intention of the GLBTAU is to promote equality and a sense of belonging to UI students and members of the Iowa City community, regardless of their sexual orientation and/or gender identification. More than that, the GLBT cause cannot succeed without the help and support of allies, so please come and feel free to bring friends!
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How can I get involved?

This is an easy one! Either contact us here at the GLBTAU website, or come to any of our events, particularly general meetings. You can check the calendar for the upcoming events. There are a lot of things you can do from planning and preparing dances to answering phones, its up to you.
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If I go to a GLBTAU event, will that "out" me?

For people who are new to the GLBTA community particularly, being "outed" is a serious concern. At most GLBTAU events however, they need not worry. Many events, are structured with your privacy in mind. The only event that people who are concerned about being "outed" might want to avoid is the "National Coming Out Day" rally.
On top of these events, we have a strict privacy policy, Our attendance rosters are never released, and we explain to our members that some people do not feel comfortable with the general public knowing their sexual orientation.
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I don't want to be involved just yet, where can I just make some friends?

Any GLBTAU event. General meetings, particularly, are more geared towards people who want to become involved, where as events like dances or parties are completely social. You are definitely not obligated to become involved, if you do not want to be.
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What is the Executive Board?

The Executive Board is basically what runs the GLBTAU. Currently it is composed of a group of 5 elected students. Students are generally elected in the Spring Semester of the prior year, and sit on the board for the next academic year.
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How involved does the GLBTAU get with local politics?

It all depends on the year. In the 2001-2002 UISG election, several candidates came to discuss their platforms at GLBTAU general meetings, in fact one party even had a GLBTAU member on its ticket. The following year however, not a single party made any attempt to contact us. GLBTAU involvement in UISG itself fluctuates similarly. However, in late 2002 the GLBTAU was given a Senator's position within UISG, which has allowed us to maintain a better watch on what goes on within student government.
As far as Iowa City as a whole, the GLBTAU maintains an occasional presence at City Council and School Board meetings, depending on the topic being discussed.
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Was the name of this group formally GLBTU?

Yes, in late 2001 the GLBTU executive board voted to change the name to the GLBTAU, in the hope that allies would feel more welcome within our group. If you look into the history of the GLBTAU, you'll see that name changes are a common, sometimes frequent, part of the GLBTAU's past, most often in an effort to help provide a sense of inclusion to all members of the community.
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