OutLaw celebrates National Coming Out Day

Published: October 18th, 2010

Category: Events, News, Students

Jorge Montesino, Karen Middlekauff and Prof. Michael Siebecker shared their personal stories in celebration of National Coming Out Day. (Photo by Vincent Massaro)

Jorge Montesino, Karen Middlekauff and Prof. Michael Siebecker shared their personal stories in celebration of National Coming Out Day. (Photo by Vincent Massaro)

National Coming Out Day was celebrated at a panel hosted by OutLaw, the Levin College of Law’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Straight Ally group. The event, titled “What Is It Like to Come Out?” was held Oct. 12 in the Bailey Courtroom, and included opening remarks by UF Law Dean Robert Jerry and moving personal stories by two UF Law students and a faculty member.

Dean Jerry emphasized the need for everyone in the law school community to learn from and be tolerant of one another. Diversity and the ability to get along with and work closely with others very different than yourself is important not just in law school, he said, but throughout your professional career.

OutLaw President Karen Middlekauff (2L) said the law school has formed a Diversity Committee to help create and promote a standard of professionalism and respect for everyone, regardless of sexual orientation, sexual identity, race or creed.

The importance of this was echoed by UF Law Professor Michael Siebecker, who said every faculty member should give a code of conduct to their students at the beginning of class, since creating a better atmosphere in any environment is “easier to start in management.”