For years, the commencement ceremony in a number of schools in Cebu has been an unfortunate event for our dear transgender student graduates instead of being one of the most memorable moments of their lives. Feelings of joy and accomplishment are overshadowed by feelings of anxiety, depression, and dysphoria. A vast majority of Philippine colleges and universities require transgender women to cut their hair and comply with the male dress code. On the other hand, transgender men are usually required to comply with the female dress code before they are cleared to march for the ceremony. Many transgender persons choose not to march at all because of this policy.
Once again, Cebu Doctors’ University(CDU), never failed to amaze us as they held their commencement exercises today, April 23, 2017, Sunday. This time, all thanks to Mandaue City’s Anti-Discriminatory Ordinance (See full pdf here: http://pages.upd.edu.ph/sites/default/files/ejmanalastas/files/anti-discriminatory-ordinance-of-mandaue.pdf) ARTICLE II SECTION 5 B.2 & B.5, CDU has complied and allowed the very first trans woman to ever march as her authentic self.
Hezekiah “Heze” Diaz, first ever trans woman in CDU to express her true self during the commencement.
“My letters, proofs and lastly the ordinance from Mandaue officially helped me win today! The fight took me two weeks…” said the 21-year-old as she was finally approved by her dean and the school’s very own President and Chairman of the board, Dr. Potenciano V. Larrazabal Jr.
Hopefully this day will open doors to future trans students who will soon graduate or who are looking for trans-friendly medical schools.
Share this post to let the schools know one of the biggest challenges trans students have to face and hopefully make this an official school policy.