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Friday, May 14, 2021

Pandemonium creates open space for students

The Social Issues Resource Center and Queer Resource Center hosted Pandemonium, a performance showcase, at the Underground Coffeehouse on Thursday, April 30.

Student and guest speakers performed spoken word, poetry, rap and other performances on various topics, including social justice, identity, marginalization, resistance and resilience. They also shared stories and experiences. The Underground had a full house of about 100 people.

“We hope to raise awareness of social issues, like oppression, racism and sexism,” senior Jasmine Boehmke said, a Fairhaven student and coordinator of the Social Issues Resource Center. “This is a space for people to share their voice and experiences, especially when they haven’t had a chance to be heard before.”

Pandemonium is one of the events for the Social Issues Resource Center, SIRC, Activism Week.

SIRC provides students education and engagement on social issues.

“The center provides events, workshops, speakers, movies and panels that address various social issues in the community and the world,” Boehmke said. SIRC has resource materials and gives students a safe space.

The Queer Resource Center, QRC, provides programs, events, resources and peer counseling to students who identify as queer and their allies.

Senior Jessie Ulmer, a creative writing major, was one of the performers.

“The piece I performed was called, ‘They Make Thorns of Us All,’” Ulmer said. “It’s about Rapunzel and Sleeping Beauty as both queer.”

This was the second time Pandemonium was held the second annual event.

“I went to the event last year,” Ulmer said. “It’s great to hear from others and I’m overwhelmed by their expression and bravery to go on stage.”

“The event was amazing and really moving,” freshman Daniella Navarro said, a bio-anthropology major. “It’s interesting to see so many people in the community involved.”

Some former students participated in the event, including Militant Child. She is a professional performer from Seattle who rapped with music and gave a spoken word piece.

SIRC had been planning for the events of Activism week since the beginning of spring quarter. It received submission forms, which went through a screening process.

KUGS-FM recorded the event and will broadcast it on-air next week.

Pandemonium is the third event of SIRC Activism week. For upcoming events and more information, see SIRCs Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/WWUSIRC/timeline.

For more information on QRC: http://as.wwu.edu/qrc.

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