Campus News

Members of the Lethbridge College and 2SLGBTQIA+ communities gathered on campus today to raise the rainbow flag in celebration of Pride Month. 

This is the eighth year the college has flown the Pride Flag in June and the third time it has raised the Progressive Pride Flag, which promotes inclusivity by recognizing trans individuals, marginalized people of colour, and those who are living with or who have died from HIV/AIDS.

The flag raising event also welcomed back to campus Dillon W. Hausauer (General Studies 2013), who shared some of her personal experiences as a member of the 2SLGBTQIA+ community and how she actively encourages others to draw strength from their pain.

Hausauer, who was a student representative on the Lethbridge College Students’ Association (LCSA) her first year and President her second year, says it was during this time she began to explore issues around her gender identity and sexual orientation.

“I experienced wonderful support from my colleagues in the LCSA, college administration, instructors and classmates,” she says, “but I was also struggling with chronic pain, mental illness and people in my life who weren’t accepting of my sexual orientation.”

Hausauer says all of those factors contributed to the first time she almost died by suicide. “I thought about the people closest to me and the support I did have, and it helped me step back from the ledge – literally and figuratively,” she says.

In the months that followed, Hausauer shared her story, and similar stories from others who, because of their gender identity or sexual orientation, struggled with mental health. She used those experiences and her leadership position with the LCSA to advocate for provincial funding. The efforts paid off in January 2013 when the Government of Alberta granted $1.5 million to the Alberta Students Executive Council to support mental health initiatives in post-secondary institutions. 

“It was really the start of a conversation in post-secondary education about mental health support and awareness,” says Hausauer. “I viewed it as a positive experience that I was able to contribute from the pain I had gone through.”

Since her time at the college, Hausauer has built a career in health care administration and corporate services. She is also an ordained elder in the Presbyterian Church of Canada, and a public speaker who helps people embrace their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual pain so they can find opportunities for growth and lead more fulfilled lives.

Lethbridge College has also made consistent efforts over the past decade to show support for the 2SLGBTQIA+ community by flying the Pride Flag each June, marching in the Pride Paradeopening the Pride Lounge, recruiting student Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) ambassadors, offering employees awareness and ally training, establishing gender neutral washrooms around campus, and facilitating a working group to identify ways to demonstrate meaningful support for the college’s 2SLGBTQIA+ students.

“As we celebrate the vibrant spirit of 2SLGBTQIA+ pride, Lethbridge College reaffirms its commitment to an inclusive campus that embraces diversity and empowers every individual to shine their brightest,” says Dr. Samantha Lenci, Provost and Vice President Academic. “We are proud of the efforts we have made thus far, and we will continue to make strides to propel change so every person on our campus feels respect, acceptance, and the freedom to be their authentic selves.

Hausauer is also pleased with the progress the college has made since her time on campus, and says she looks forward to even more resources becoming available to students and employees in the future. 

“We have come a long way, but that doesn’t negate the fact that many people in the 2SLGBTQIA+ community are feeling fear and the effects of prejudice,” says Hausauer. “With the proper support, we can reframe that stress and grow stronger for the benefit of ourselves, our communities and our organizations.”

Additional information on Lethbridge College’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion initiatives can be found at