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Delia Giandeini, Unsplash.
perspectives
To Be Visible, Proud, and Queer
Ariel Malan, program coordinator for Utah’s Transgender Health Program discusses the limits often placed on gender expression in the workplace, and how in her current role, she is fortunate to be able to express herself.
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s a queer femme identified person, much of the way I express myself day to day is a reflection of this part of me. For most of my professional life and education, I have been told what professional women look like, how they dress, and how they act. Bright colors, patterns, expressive jewelry or hair has always been off limits. Dress codes have predominantly been used to control the image of an organization and unfortunately reinforce a strict binary representation of gender expression. As such, I’ve felt like I’ve had to prove myself in other ways to justify the way that I express myself.

In my current position, I am grateful and privileged to say that I have not had to experience this. This has been incredibly validating for me as a queer person to have a space where I can dress authentic to myself and bring up topics about queer identities without being shut down. On National Coming Out Day, I hope to be visible to my University community that being proud and queer is possible and I stand by you to be your truest self not just at home but in the workplace too.

About Ariel Malan (She/Her/Hers) 

Ariel Malan earned a Master’s degree in Healthcare Administration from University of Utah in 2018. For over a decade, Ariel's passion has been working with LGBTQ+ communities through advocacy, education, and research. Ariel currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Utah Pride Center and is the Program Coordinator for the University of Utah Transgender Health Program.

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