LGBT Activism in Los Angeles
Blogger: Dana Coffman
After my junior year at Occidental I decided it was time to stay in Los Angeles for the summer. I wanted my time to be productive, so I examined the internship opportunities posted on the school’s career website, TigerLink. After applying to a few and not hearing much, I stumbled upon a marketing internship with the nonprofit Gay and Lesbian Elder Housing. Located in Hollywood the organization works to provide affordable housing and services for low-income LGBT senior citizens. Currently GLEH is the only such nonprofit in the country and working with them was an exceptional experience.
Though I started as an intern during the summer, they decided to hire me for the rest of the year after I'd finished the three-month introductory period. In helping the organization fundraise I was able to attend all of their phenomenal events, as well as meet some of the most inspiring people I have ever encountered. Many of the residents in the GLEH property in Hollywood are some of our nation’s first gay activists. Hearing their stories and understanding their journeys has been a truly eye-opening experience. Opportunities to work with organizations like GLEH are part of what makes the Occidental community, and our phenomenal location in Los Angeles, such important features in a liberal arts education.