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Utah Division of Games and LGBT Resource Center Co-Organize Gaymer Night to Launch Pride Week

In a strong display of support for student success at the University of Utah, the Utah LGBT Resource Center and the Utah Division of Games joined forces to host a special event called Gaymer Night this past Monday, April 1, 2024. This unique gathering, held on the first night of the University of Utah’s Pride Week celebration, brought together over 96 students, faculty, staff and community members for a night of Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) gameplay, fostering a welcoming environment for LGBTQ+ individuals and allies alike.

Gaymer Night, held at the Division of Games building on the U campus, served as a testament to the power of gaming to unite people from diverse backgrounds. Attendees were greeted with an atmosphere of camaraderie and acceptance, where everyone could freely express themselves while engaging in the well-loved table-top role-playing game.

Associate Professor Ashley Guajardo, Ph.D., lead organizer of the event from the Games Division, expressed her enthusiasm for the initiative, stating, “Gaymer Night every year is a wonderful event, but this year was really special. For many folks, myself included, tabletop role playing is an opportunity to make lifelong friends. Having opportunities to do that on campus is invaluable.”

The event received generous support from both games industry and community partners, including Wizards of the Coast and Legendarium Bookstore, whose contributions helped make the evening unforgettable. Their commitment to promoting diversity and representation within the gaming community played a vital role in the success of Gaymer Night.

Professor Michael Young, Chair of the Games Division, highlighted the significance of events like Gaymer Night in creating a more inclusive gaming culture. He remarked, “By partnering with the LGBT Resource Center, we aim to create spaces where everyone feels valued and respected. Games are a place where individuals can be their authentic selves.  What better way to be your authentic self than to create a character of your choice and take them on an epic adventure with your friends?”

This was the fifth year in a row that the Division of Games has hosted a Pride Week Gaymer Night, advancing the Division and the U’s solidarity with and celebration of the LGBTQ+ community.

As the evening drew to a close, attendees departed knowing that they were part of a community that embraces diversity and celebrates the success of all. Gaymer Night serves as a reminder that everyone has a place at our tabletop.