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Student & Alumni Achievements

Student & Alumni Achievements

BU: Student Wins Leather Leadership Conference Scholarship Award

Boston University School of Public Health student Mx. Iris Olson has won the Leather Leadership Conference Scholarship Award by the Leather Leadership Conference (LLC), a nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening the leather, BDSM, kink, and fetish communities. The scholarship is granted to students who belong to the leather, BDSM (bondage/discipline, domination/submission, sadism/masochism), and kink communities and are studying subjects that support the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer/questioning (LGBTQ) community and health-related topics.  

Mx. Olson received the $2,000 award in March at the LLC’s annual conference in Atlanta, Ga.

Mx. Olson, a part-time student who plans to graduate in the fall, is studying health communication and promotion as well as sex, sexuality, and gender. In addition to classes, Mx. Olson works full-time as a health educator at Harbor Health Services. For their practicum, Mx. Olson served as the director of outreach for the New England Leather Alliance (NELA), a Boston-based nonprofit organization dedicated to education, advocacy, and charitable giving within the leather, BDSM, kink, and fetish communities.

“I was excited when my practicum was approved,” Mx. Olson says. “BDSM is a really important public health issue because it tends to be disregarded, and it’s so stigmatized that no one wants to discuss it.”

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