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Another Wellesley alum who came out as being a guy after graduation, Warren Kunce '08, posted a video reacting to the recent news. I particularly liked his comments from 3:44-5:58 in the video, as follows:

"The admissions office at Wellesley has decided that that is either too confusing for a prospective student, or somehow the interview would be made all about me and my transition. Which is really insulting, by the way, that, like, I am an intelligent human being. I do know what the purpose of the interview is. I do know how to make an interview not be about myself. It's just this whole idea that the interview would be more about me than about the student is frankly, just absurd. It's insulting as well.... It first of all assumes that, one, that I would be comfortable talking about being trans and my transition, which, depending on the situation, I probably won't be. I mean, the whole thing can be taken care of in two sentences, like: "Hello, yes, I'm transgender, I transitioned to male after I was at Wellesley College, but this interview is about you, not about me, so let's go ahead. You know? This is not difficult. I'm not going to sit with a prospective student, a stranger who's 17 years old, who I don't know, and talk to them about, like, my gender identity and my transition. That's so inappropriate, so inappropriate. Why would I do that?

The only reason I can think of for us to spend any time at all talking about my gender identity is if the student was trans and wanted to know: as a trans person, how will it be at Wellesley? Will it be okay for me to transition at Wellesley? In which case I think I would be the perfect alum to be having this interview with the student. This whole policy, not letting trans alumni do the prospective interviews, also assumes that the prospective student is not transgender, which is not cool."

Warren, if you're reading this, thanks for saying this! Someone had to call out just how ridiculous the idea that someone who was trans would automatically make the interview about himself, and to me it was so absurd that I couldn't even address it head-on. It bounced right off my absurdity filter.

In other news, here's a story about the Smith student I mentioned who's being denied the role of hosting prospective students. As well, notes from a Bryn Mawr alum who's trying to get them to state a clear policy on trans women as applicants, featuring this bureaucratic gem from their admissions office: "If it is not clear that an applicant to the College is female, we would approach the situation on an individual basis to gain a better understanding of the student's circumstances." (I assume this means panty-checks?)

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Tim Chevalier

September 2014

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