President Steenkamp: Come as you are

One of the great joys in life is the feeling that you can simply, safely, and unapologetically, be yourself. Last summer, we raised the Pride flag on Hatley Castle for the very first time in the university’s history. It was great to have you along with me, even if it was only on video because of the pandemic.

At Royal Roads, we are committed to enhancing the inclusion and engagement of people of diverse backgrounds and experiences in all aspects of university life. That’s why this week, in recognition of the International Trans Day of Visibility on March 31, the pink, blue, and white striped flag is being flown on the castle.

This day was created by activist Rachel Crandall in 2009 as a celebration of the resilience and success of transgender and gender nonconforming people, and to raise awareness of transgender rights. As allies, there is still much work to do: we can use gender-neutral language; we can support organizations and companies that value diversity and inclusion; if we hear others using language that is disrespectful we can invite them to have a conversation about it and we can join our trans, gender non-conforming, non-binary and Two-Spirit friends and colleagues in meaningful celebration.

I want everyone to know: when you come to campus each and every day to learn and to work you are always welcome to bring your whole selves here.

Watch the full video: