So friends, we have some very exciting news for you all! We are absolutely delighted to announce that we have recently been awarded the GALA for Best LGBT Student Society in Ireland, and we won Best Society at the UL Clubs and Society Awards!!! Yay!!!
So to those of you who don’t know, the GALAS are an annual awards ceremony that was ‘created in 2009 by GCN and The National LGBT Federation to honour those who work towards a better future for LGBT people in Ireland’. The GALAS are there to celebrate everyone from journalists, to employers, to sports stars, to student societies, to anyone who has helped to make Ireland that little bit more LBGTQ friendly in some way.
This year the awards were held in The Shelbourne Hotel in Dublin on March 6. Three of our lovely committee were sent off with strict instructions to keep us constantly updated. Out in UL had been nominated in the category of Best Student Society, alongside Trinity’s Q Soc, UCD LGBTQ and Irish Trans* Students Alliance. Needless to say we were up against some serious competition. But, to our absolute delight, WE WON! It was such an honour for us to even be nominated, but to be able to say we won a national award is just something else. In saying that, there’s no way we would have been able to get to this point without all the amazing support we receive, so to everyone out there who’s ever , we just want to say a massive thank you from the bottom of your hearts ❤
Then as if that wasn’t enough excitement, soon after we found out we’d been nominated for two awards in the UL Clubs and Societies Awards! Queerbash 11 was up for the Best Event (side note: Queerbash 12 is happening in Dolan’s in Limerick on April 9, and you should definitely go to that) and we were also on the shortlist for Best Society. After a night of intense hustings and a week’s worth of crossing our fingers, the Out in UL committee got all dolled up for the awards which were held in the Strand Hotel in Limerick. As the winners of the the other various awards were called out, it eventually came around to Best Society Event. That award went to the fantastic Comedy Society, and although we were disappointed, we were delighted that such a deserved society won it.
Then came the big one, Best Society. Again, we had major competition, being up against both UL’s Music Society and the International society. But to our absolute shock and delight, Out in UL’s name was read out! To say we then proceeded to have an absolutely unforgettable night would be more than an understatement. Once again we’d like to say a massive thank you to everyone who has gotten to where we are now, whether you were a one semester Erasmus member, or a past President, you’ve all shaped the society into what it is today, and we are beyond grateful, so thank you.
Now we’re off to the BICS awards in April, so hopefully we’ll come home with a win from that too! Wish us luck!
I joined Out in UL in my first semester in University, I joined committee in my second. Since then I have seen the society grow and advance to the award winning community I am a proud member of today. Through members meetings, Befrienders and Queer Hangouts, Out in UL provide support and safe spaces for their members to engage and learn about LGBTQ issues. The society has given me the confidence to be who I am, and the knowledge I need to be able to learn and accept those different from me. I would not be the person I am today if not for Out in UL and I am very thankful for that.
~ Brian McCarthy
I’ve been a member of Out in UL since I came to UL last year,and have been lucky enough to spend the last two semesters on the committee. I can honestly say that it’s by far been the highlight of my college experience, and at times it’s been the main reason I didn’t drop out when things got difficult. I feel so proud and grateful to have been able to alongside such a dedicated, diligent group of people who’ve helped shape Out in UL into the award winning society it has so deservedly become.
~ Ciara G