The Phenomenal “ISAAN PRIDE 2023” – KKU opens the safe zone to enhance equality

Friday June, 2023 – The Center for Gender Studies of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Science, Khon Kaen University and the network organized the event called: “Isaan Pride 2023 – Inclusiveness of Isan and Gender Equality”. A lot of youths, students and the public came to the fair from the morning when they were able to visit exhibition booths that provided information and opened the safe zone for exchanges of opinions about equality in various dimensions.

In the afternoon session, the Center for Gender Studies and the Isan Gender Diversity Network (IGDN) held a forum on the topic of: “Gender Next Journey”, which is a venue for exchanging of the issues of gender diversities among the new generation. This forum was organized at HUSO Learning Center, HS. 03 Building, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Khon Kaen University.

The evening session featured the Pride Parade that began from the parking area beside the Sports Building (the former gymnasium) towards the former Degree Conferral Pavilion. The Pride Parade included floating vans and a lot of people dressed in rainbow colored attires, who later showcased their fantastic dresses on the Pride Catwalk laid with a rainbow-color flag.

The session that followed was the official activity. Assoc. Prof. Orathai Piayura, Ph.D., Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences of Khon Kaen University reported that the Faculty has established the “Center for Gender Studies” with the objectives for it to be a center for education, research, and teaching and learning of gender studies as well as disseminating the information to the society. The target groups are women, children and LGBTQ+. Moreover, the Center also promotes sex equality and publicizing academic work outcomes.

In order to meet the said objectives, the Center for Gender Studies thus held this Isaan Pride 2023 event with the network, to build awareness of the rights related to LGBTQ+. The Fair was meant to provide a space for expressing and exchanging of opinions among LGBTQ+s, especially KKU students.

Assoc. Prof. Piansak Pakdee, Vice President for Student Development and Alumni Relation, who chaired the event said that he was pleased to join the “ISAAN PRIDE 2023” today, which was the second time the event had been held after the success of the first year, as a venue for communicating and expressing the diversities. This year, Khon Kaen University still sees the importance of the Pride Month or the month to celebrate the respect towards human pride and the rights of gender diversities. Isan Pride event was also held to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Khon Kaen University.

“Khon Kaen University sees the importance of the rights and freedom for expression. These are the basic rights of human and that is why the event is organized. It also answers the UN’s SDG 5: Achieve Gender Equality and Empower All Women and Girls. It is hoped that the event today will demonstrate the mixture of modern Isan cultures with awareness of gender and cultural diversities. No matter what gender you are, each forms a hue of color that can be different but equal on the rainbow color flag. I wish everyone happiness with the equality.”

Chanon Artnarong, the representative from the Student Activity Organization said that the Organization is one among all that support gender diversities in Khon Kaen University and wants LGBTQ+ to have their safe zone that is free from exclusion. Moreover, everyone should be free to express themselves according to their gender condition without any worries. This includes student uniforms and degree gowns.

“Pride must not be an event that is held and ended. The celebration of equality must not happen on one day, but it has to happen every day. The University must not limit the human sexuality based on the initials of a Mr or a Miss. Everyone has his or her own self that is more valuable than what the former gender frame limited you. An academic institution should be a place that opens for freedom of thoughts and opens a creative zone without any limitation for all.”


“Isaan Pride 2023” ended with the special shows, namely: Drag Show, Cover Dance and music from Khon Kaen University students, and the final performance of Mo Lam “Silapin Phuthai” Band. The performances impressed the student and public audience a great deal.

Tee Noi – Keerati Waenlor, a 3rd year student from the Faculty of Sciences smiled and said that he was happy that KKU opened the space for all to express their potentiality. He is one LGBTQ+ and therefore wanted to be accepted. He said he wanted all to see the value of themselves and support one another. He hoped that in the future the University will organize such as event again and continue to support gender equality.

Similarly, Nantaphak Thongwow, a student from the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences said that he himself sees the importance of propulsion for gender equality in the society. Therefore, he came here today to demonstrate and campaign on this issue. He hopes that the law of marriage equality will be issued.


News: Phanit Khatanak

Photos: Natthawut Jaruwong



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