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In honor of Pride Month, we asked members of the LGBTQA community at Rutgers and their allies to share their thoughts on progress made, the continuing challenges they face and what pride means to them. Here are their reflections.


Albert Ayeni grew up in Nigeria, where a meal seemed incomplete if it did not include a hot pepper. Now he is working to make Rutgers the go-to center for hot pepper research to appeal to New Jersey’s growing ethnic communities and remind them of home.

An operating room on a jet might sound like something straight out of a movie, but it’s actually how Rudolph Wagner, a clinical professor in the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, travels the world to fight preventable blindness.

Hear Elizabeth Matto, director of the Eagleton Institute of Politics’ Center for Youth Political Participation, explain in 60 seconds why students should care about voting.

On the field playing soccer for Rutgers-NewarkTimothy Fariaslearned the importance of doing his part to help his team succeed. The lesson – that he can make a difference, which impacts others in the game – inspired him to also be a catalyst for change in his community.