What is Belleville West Spectrum?


Lukas Pellmann

With the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year, Belleville West Spectrum has once again begun its bi-weekly meetings. Every other Wednesday after school in the library, Spectrum strives to create a welcoming and safe environment for gay and straight students alike.

“We want to make sure we have a community that is safe for kids who are members of the LGBTQ+ and allies. Sometimes in a school this big it can be a little bit difficult to find a space where you feel like you can be yourself”, Spectrum Adviser Mrs. Julie Schloesser said. “Especially for members of our community who are sometimes marginalized and made to feel unsafe in other spaces, I feel that it’s incredibly important for us to provide that sort of, warm feeling of belonging.”

Though Spectrum aims to achieve multiple things for its members, its main goal is to create a warm-welcoming safe space for everyone. With queer people often being under-represented in most typical school settings, Spectrum and its leaders continue to open their arms to more than just people of the LGBTQ+.

“Anyone is welcome in Spectrum regardless of gender, sexuality, or race,” said junior and club president Alyssa Scherer.

As the demographic of students who show up to Spectrum consistently widen, Spectrum’s members and leaders always welcome newcomers.  Whilst welcoming new members with open arms, Spectrum meetings continue to provide their members with nothing but engaging meetings.

“We do talk about some serious issues but we also do fun stuff like last year, we went into the courtyard and we drew everywhere with chalk, so, that was a lot of fun,” said Vice President Sage Pratt

Social injustices beyond that of just the LGBTQ+ community continue to be a prominent issue in today’s society. These are the types of issues that are frequently mentioned in Spectrum meetings. Yet, Spectrum officers Alyssa, Sage, and Hannah never fail to make fun and inclusive activities for club meetings that always positively impact the Spectrum community.

“I love how welcoming the community is and how everyone can just be themselves,” said sophomore Sophia Schuchart.

With returning members happy with Spectrum, there can only be a bright future for Spectrum and its community.  

“This year we will probably continue the path we started last year. Our club seems to want to focus on social justice issues and it seems like that’s still important to our membership,” said Schloesser. “I really want to highlight the crucial importance of just making sure that everybody in the club knows that we are all here for each other and that we intend to be a community within the larger school population.”