Cory Wade

Cory Wade

Speaker

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  • First openly gay male contestant ever to appear on America’s Next Top Model
  • Educates on gender non-conformity and general queer culture in today’s society as a gender fluid individual
  • His LGBT+ activism has been published in the Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, People, Elite Daily, Mic and more

Cory Wade is a multi-medium entertainer, most well known for competing and placing third on cycle 20 of America's Next Top Model. As the first openly gay male contestant ever to appear on ANTM, Cory has used his televised platform to take a strong socio-political stance in support of LGBT equality. He has been published in the Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, People, Elite Daily, Mic and others in various articles about gender non-conformity as well as general queer culture in today’s society. Beyond the notoriety garnered through his reality TV stint, Cory Wade is a fiercely talented musician. Drawing inspiration from David Bowie, Prince, Boy George and Grace Jones, Cory's music is pop driven with electro-funk and soul influences. Cory Wade's debut album (independently released August 31st, 2017) was produced by Alan Glass who has produced iconic records from the likes of Aretha Franklin, The Temptations, Jennifer Holiday and more!

Beyond Sexpectation (Keynote)
Beyond Sexpectation is a talk intent on urging students to reflect on practical empathy, authentic self-expression, and the power in sharing one’s story. In this keynote, Cory shares his own story of struggle and triumph in navigating his queer identity. He relates his experience on America’s Next Top Model to how cultural expectations concerning gender, sexuality and race still function as a hinderance on our ability to access our true potential. The goal is to encourage students to want to share their own stories and to always strive to empathize with stories that are unique to their own life experiences.

  • Sexpectations: What are sexpectations? Where do they originate? We will focus in on the psychological fog gender expectations create for those who fit outside of them and how to navigate that uncertainty.
  • Normalcy: We will break down the Merriam Webster textbook definition of the word “Normal”. (n. Conforming to a type, standard or regulated pattern.) Does this pattern really reflect humanity in its entirety?
  • New Rules: We will strategize on how we can expand the rules of our social construct to make it one that is inclusive for all human beings.
  • Empathy: We will discuss the importance of human connection, storytelling and relating to one another in a more open and honest way so as to counter against the many divisive and toxic human-phobias of our society. We will encourage effective communication and true human understanding.
  • Activism: How does one become an activist? We will talk about different ways in which people can take up activism in their own lives and how one must possess the desire and will to affect change in order to become an activist.
  • Empowerment: We will talk about the importance of self confidence in everything we set out to do. We will be reminded of our steady power. We will encourage each-other to want to step into that power. We will emphasize on the preservation of our mental health.

Queer Vocab (Workshop)
This is a classroom setting vocab workshop in which we will discuss emerging vocabulary in the LGBTQPIA+ vernacular to encourage articulate communication around queer subject matter.

  • The LGBTQPIA+ Acronym: We will learn the words attached to the letters and what they mean. We will also discuss how everyone uses the acronym differently! It is a tool meant to empower us, NOT a rulebook meant to intimidate and confuse us.
  • Gender versus Sexuality: After we learn the words we will play a matching game to determine if each word is used to either describe a person's gender or rather to describe their sexuality. We will discuss why. We will define the difference between gender and sexuality.
  • Normalizing getting it wrong: It's okay to mess up! As long as you express a willingness to get it right, there should be no reason to be hard on yourself. We will talk about what might be offensive in terms of how we relate to queer people. We will discuss strategies on how we can avoid offending someone. We will also discuss the importance of patience and forgiveness.



Location: New York, New York