it is not the answer that enlightens, but the question.

A step in the right direction would be massive investments in education, drug treatment, health care, and job creation, and trauma support in the communities that have been devastated by the war on drugs and mass incarceration. – Michelle Alexander

Listen and learn; and/or read and reflect:



Chicago State University (CSU) celebrated the grand opening of its LGBTQ+ Resource Center on October 10th! ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

The Mission of the CSU LGBTQ+ Resource Center is to create a community that is welcoming, inclusive, and supportive of people of all sexualities and gender identities. We focus our efforts on advocacy, increasing education, access, retention, identity development, and community building for queer- and trans-spectrum people. 

Read more about this exciting story in the Illinois Eagle or visit the Center online.

Chicago State University (CSU) has deep historical roots in higher education. Founded in 1867 in Blue Island as an experimental teacher training school, CSU is the second oldest public university in Illinois. From its beginnings in a leaky railroad boxcar, CSU has transformed with the City of Chicago and surrounding areas. For over 150 years, changes have reflected an ongoing commitment to academic excellence and community service. Today, CSU is located on a picturesque urban campus of 161 wooded acres on Chicago’s south side. CSU currently serves a diverse blend of predominantly African American and Latinx students. It has evolved from a teacher training institution to a comprehensive university with modern facilities.

The CSU College of Education offers quality programs to prepare educational professionals. The College recognizes the importance of diverse populations who are intellectually and ethically informed with skills and knowledge to be capable leaders and creative thinkers. CSU began offering training for librarians in 1947. Today, the Department of Information Studies prepares future librarians, archivists, and other information professionals to work in a variety of settings.

On June 23, 2019, the American Library Association granted a certificate of accreditation for the CSU Master of Science in Library and Information Science degree program. Accreditation is achieved through a review process conducted by an external review panel of practitioners and academics to verify the program meets the Standards for Accreditation of Master’s Programs in Library and Information Studies. Upon receiving this exciting news, CSU President Z. Scott, Esq. stated, “Our success is a testament to the hard work and commitment of our faculty, students, and staff in the College of Education.”

Library and Information Science students specialize in school libraries, including licensure and endorsement; archives and records management; academic libraries; or public libraries. Other information studies options focusing on humanistic, scientific, and technological approaches to inquiry are also available. Programs may be completed online.

For additional information, please visit:

brave spaces

LGBTQ @ CSU recently hosted LaSaia Wade, Executive Director of Brave Space Alliance, a Black-led, trans-led LGBTQ Center located on the South Side of Chicago designed to create and provide culturally competent community services. LaSaia led a lively session and challenged us to continue working to develop and promote affirming spaces – and enable understanding and growth around trans issues. 

All of us in the queer community (and beyond) owe much appreciation to the many brave trans folks, particularly TWOC, who have led and continue to lead the way for us across contexts.    

March 31 is the tenth anniversary of Trans Day of Visibility (TDoV).


In the Margins


I am honored to be part of the In the Margins Books Awards Committee to recognize literature that appeals to the reading needs and wants of marginalized young adults. Here are our 2019 top picks for Fiction, Nonfiction, and Advocacy:

  • Where the Dead Sit Talking by Brandon Hobson
  • Voces Sin Fronteras: Our Stories, Our Truth by Latin American Youth Center Writers and Santiago Casares
  • The War on Kids: How American Juvenile Justice Lost its Way by Cara H. Drinan

Full details available from SLJ:

In the Margins 2019 Top Ten Titles


In December, 2018, a homelessness awareness initiative was launched as part of the Sesame Street in Communities program.

As WGN9 reported, the goal is to give service providers, parents, and teachers tools to address homelessness with children, in order to talk about it and raise awareness of the issue from a child’s perspective and also to help children experiencing homelessness feel less alone.

About 1 in 20 children younger than 6 experience homelessness according to a report released by the US Administration for Children and Families.

On October 18, Chicago State University celebrated famed author and poet Gwendolyn Brooks, a former faculty member, by renaming its library in her honor.Portrait unveiling with Joyce Owens Anderson

Read more about the lively ceremony at or listen to Ms. Brooks herself in this interview.

I am a writer perhaps because I am not a talker. – GEB 1917-2000