The Maneater

Olmstead replaces Struble as new LGBTQ Resource Coordinator

The center will celebrate its 20th anniversary this year.

LGBTQ Resource Center Coordinator Sean Olmstead poses for a portrait Sept. 1, 2015, in the Student Center in Columbia, Mo.

Sean Olmstead came to MU this summer as the new LGBTQ Resource Center coordinator just in time for its 20th anniversary.

“For the LGBTQ student population, those students often see this place as a place of self-preservation or where we can put down our guard sometimes,” Olmstead said. “For other students, we serve them by helping to educate them about sexual orientation and gender identity.”

Olmstead said he plans to make the LGBTQ Resource Center a by-the-students, for-the-students organization.

Because of former coordinator Struby Struble’s legacy, Olmstead said he sees the major act he has to follow.

“It’s intimidating because it sets a really high expectation, but that helps drive me to want to do great things,” Olmstead said. “She has done a fantastic job of sustaining and growing what the LGBTQ Resource Center does.”

Theresa Eultgen, The Women’s Center coordinator, has been working with Olmstead over the summer in resource sharing and support.

“He’s got a really well-rounded vision on being inclusive and empowering students to be the best version of themselves,” Eultgen said. “We have a lot of good positive reinforcement regarding communication because we do a lot of similar thing so it’s nice to have that partnership.”

Olmstead is also planning a lot of events to celebrate the center’s 20th anniversary.

Eultgen said she will work with Olmstead to plan Queer Monologues, which is held in the spring.

“Queer Monologues is a really fun interactive program for everybody who participates,” Eultgen said. “What’s so beautiful is that it’s all stories from MU’s campus so it will be his first one so I’m excited for him to come on this year.”

The center is planning other events including with the Proud Tigers Mentorship program, which the center calls “an all-inclusive mentoring program providing support, guidance, and resources to minoritized students at Mizzou.” There is also the Queer Fall Fling, an open house for the center and a score of LGBTQ organizations to join.

Although school hasn’t been in session for long, Olmstead said he is already noticing things about the MU community.

“I love how students speak their mind and are critical of the world around them,” Olmstead said. “That makes my job harder and easier because I know that I’m being held to a high standard for students, but also I know that the work we’ll be doing will be important.”

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