SafeZone at PCOM

Image of SafeZone's logo

A SafeZone is a place where all people feel welcome and safe. It may be a room, a building or an entire college campus.

PCOM's SafeZone program is open to all faculty, students, administrators and staff. It allows those who have gone through orientation and training to identify their offices/workspaces by means of a symbol placed on their door or other convenient location as safe zones for members of the LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning) community.

SafeZone Train-the-Trainer programs are designed to develop confident, knowledgeable and effective SafeZone trainers who can work toward developing and maintaining environments that are culturally competent and supportive to LGBT students, faculty, staff, co-workers and managers.

PCOM's SafeZone exists:
  • To promote acceptance and awareness of the diversity of gender identity and sexual orientation on PCOM campuses.
  • To provide a community of allies for LGBTQ people.
  • To provide evidence of and visibility for the support of LGBTQ people and their allies within the PCOM community.


Purpose of SafeZone training

  • To provide a standardized curriculum baseline for potential allies and members of the PCOM SafeZone program.
  • To enable faculty, staff and students to engage in becoming a source of support and allies to the LGBTQ campus community.

Goals of SafeZone training

  • To clarify the role of an ally in general and at PCOM.
  • To explore the role of hetero-privilege in society.
  • To explore social and religious stigma/bias.
  • To promote a common understanding of the language associated with Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, and Transgender persons.
  • To facilitate discussion of the (ongoing) “coming out” process.
  • To provide participants with a common foundation for the understanding of developmental, social, and emotional experiences of LGBTQ persons.
  • To provide opportunity for self-reflection of personal biases and/or issues on the topic of LGBTQ people. 

Learning objectives of SafeZone training

At the conclusion of this program, the participant is expected to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the qualities of an ally.
  • Demonstrate an awareness of the (stages) of the coming out process.
  • Explain the role of hetero-privilege in our society.
  • Demonstrate respect for confidentiality in the coming out process.
  • Demonstrate awareness of the potential negative impact of “outing” a LGBTQ person without their permission.
  • Direct others to suitable LGBTQ resources.
  • Be conversant with the main vocabulary (technical, colloquial, pejorative) used by and about LGBTQ community.
  • Make an informed choice about becoming part of the PCOM SafeZone Network.
  • Display an understanding of developmental, social, and emotional experiences of LGBTQ persons. 
  • Reflect on personal biases and/or issues about LGBTQ.

Philadelphia SafeZone Trained Staff

Denah Appelt, Bio-Medical Sciences, Evans Hall, Suite 342
Deborah Benvenger, Admissions, Evans Hall, Suite 120
Jeffrey Branch, ODL, Rowland Hall, Suite 226
Stephenie N. Canlas, Geriatric Medicine, Rowland Hall, Suite 528
Deb Castellano, Registrar, Rowland Hall, Suite 203
Ruth Conboy, Student Affairs, Evans Hall, Suite 108D
Rachel Cuffeld, ODL/CE, Rowland Hall, Suite 226
Denise Curran, Student Affairs, Evans Hall, Suite 101
Meshonea Fox, Student Affairs, Evans Hall, Suite 101
Elizabeth Gosch, Psychology, Rowland Hall, Suite 226
Diana Greene, Psychology, Rowland Hall, Suite 226
Persko Grier, Library, Evans Hall, 1st Floor
Joan Grzybowski, Healthcare Centers, 5830 Henry Ave.
Sean Guinane, Physician Assistant Studies, Rowland Hall, Suite 207
Monica Jones, Wellness Center, Rowland Hall, Suite 311
Douglas Koch, Bio-Medical Sciences, Evans Hall, Suite 330
Lavinia Lafferty, President's Office, Levin Admin. Bldg, 1st Floor Suite
Meg Lewis, Library, Evans Hall, 1st floor
Susan M. Panichelli Mindel, Psychology, Rowland Hall, Suite 513
Juanita Outlaw-Bedford, Finance, Rowland, Suite 240
Kari Shotwell, Admissions, Evans Hall, Suite 120
Robert Sklar, Emergency Medicine, Rowland Hall, Suite 538
Grace Taylor, Financial Aid, Rowland Hall, Suite 203
Yuma Tomes, Psychology, Rowland Hall, Suite 226
Marsha Williams, Admissions, Evans Hall, Suite 120
Dianzheng Zhang, Bio-Medical Sciences, Evans Hall, Suite 411

Georgia SafeZone Trained Staff

Adwoa Aduonum, Bio-Medical Sciences
Skye Bickett, Library
Valerie Cadet, Biomedical Sciences
Shafik Habal, Medical Micro and Immunology
Elizabeth Levine, ODL
Tiarra Lewis, Human Resources
Patience Mason, Student Affairs
Erica Rosalle, Library
Tamara Scaccia, Student Affairs
Michael Selby, Anatomy
Shu Zhu, Pharmacy