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LGBTQIA+ Staff Profile: Kayden J Schumacher

Read on to learn about Kayden, a PhD Scholar for Global Learning and Attainment, and a Lecturer in Psychology at Coventry University.

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Kayden smiling by the Queer Britain Museum

Name and pronouns:
Kayden J Schumacher, they/he

What department are you part of at Coventry University? What work do you do? 

PhD Scholar Centre for Global Learning Education and Attainment (GLEA); Lecturer in Psychology Coventry University among other things. 

  • PhD examining transgender and gender diverse students’ and educators’ experiences in the English Education system from 1988 (Section 28) to today.  

  • Researching pronoun policies within higher education institutions and their effects on students, staff and stakeholders.  
  • Teaching and designing coursework for numerous psychology modules at both the undergraduate and graduate level like: “Developing as a psychologist”; “Social Psychology in Sport”; “Psychology of Gender and Sexuality”; “Diversity of Human Experience” 
  • PGR Rep for GLEA  
  • Member of the AtGender Board; Sexuality and Gender Special Interest Group Convenor for the British Educational Research Association; Member of the British Psychological Association; British Sociological Association and more.   
  • Licensed School Counsellor (USA) 
  • Certified Personal Trainer through the American College of Sports Medicine (since 2018)

Favourite song/band/book/film? 

  • Song = September by Earth Wind and Firw
  • Band = too difficult to decide: Elton John; Lady Gaga; Dermot Kennedy; Jess Gynne; AJR; Brandi Carlile 
  • Book = Eat Pray Love; Book of Joy;  
  • Film = Too hard to decide, but I do love documentaries and indie films 

What is your proudest moment? This could be a work achievement or a personal one. 

My proudest moment was being the first person in my family to graduate from university at a prestigious small liberal arts school. I was a double major in psychology and gender studies, competed in two sports and was overly involved in many societies and extracurricular activities. As was tradition at my school, when my class was walking into graduation, we were surrounded by our various faculty members and support staff who would be clapping for us standing on both sides (sort of making a tunnel for us). I nearly started crying as I got to witness and experience so much joy and pride from all my professors, coaches, and support staff walking into the ceremony. It was incredibly moving and something that will stick with me forever.  

What does the LGBTQIA+ community mean to you? 

The LGBTQIA+ community to me, means having literally that, a community of people who see you, value you, and empower you to be yourself in whatever that looks like. The LGBTQIA+ community also means activism, protest, history, blurring lines, and showing up for each other. We have always existed, and we will continue to exist with the strength of our community.  

What advice would you give to your younger self?  

Advice I would give to my younger self would be to not care so much what other people think about me. I spent too much time, energy and effort always worried about how I was presenting and how much I could “pass” in a very small conservative American town, and as a pansexual trans person, this was exhausting. While I do think I was very resilient as a younger person, I think a great deal of mental health concerns and self-worth could have been supported if I found a stronger LGBTQIA+ community as a younger person to be proud of myself and stand up for my presentation, even if I was still in the closet.  

Visit our LGBT+ History Month page to find out more about the activities we have going on for the LGBT+ community.

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