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Junior Mark Clark and freshman Kat Tyler work in the new Pride Center relocated in Downing Student Union room 2084. Clark has been a part of the center since it first began two years ago. It's open to anyone looking for questions, outreach or a general safe space.

The WKU Pride Center officially reopened its doors Thursday during an open house on the second floor of Downing Student Union.

The Intercultural Student Engagement Center opened the Pride Center as a meeting place for all WKU students to feel welcome, said Jeremy McFarland, Campbellsville senior and Pride Center intern.

McFarland said the Pride Center also serves as a place for members of the LGBTQ community to access university resources.

“Before we had the Pride Center, we didn’t have a place for ourselves,” said Hailey Trusty, a freshman member of the LGBTQ community from Adrian, Michigan, “The Pride Center gives us that.”

Kristina Gamble, the program coordinator for ISEC, said the Pride Center was previously located in the Garrett Conference Center but was moved due to overcrowding and accessibility issues.

Gamble said the center was moved to Downing Student Union in January of this year because the location in Garrett “wasn’t as accessible,” and the center needed more space to accommodate students.

Louisville sophomore Birdie Crumbacker said she believes the Pride Center is vital in bringing together the LGBTQ community.

“As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, it’s important to have a strong support system,” Crumbacker said. “The Pride Center is that support system.”

The Pride Center, located in DSU room 2084, can be reserved and used for meetings, studying or leisurely activities, according to its website. The website also includes online resources for LGBTQ students.

News reporter Amelia Hicks can be reached at 270-745-6011 and amelia.hicks852@topper.wku.edu. Follow Amelia on Twitter at @ameliahicks852.