Cory Wade

Cory Wade


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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 (He, They) is a public speaker, a queer inclusive sex-educator, and a prominent voice within the LGBTQ+ community. Cory’s activism started after he appeared on television as the first openly gay male ever to compete on America's Next Top Model. Cory has since used the social platform garnered through their reality TV stint to help facilitate conversations around queer inclusion and LGBTQPIA2S+ equality across America. Cory has toured the US to speak at multiple colleges & universities on effective allyship, inclusion, equality, practical empathy and human understanding. He also gives classroom setting workshops on emerging vocabulary in the LGBTQPIA+ vernacular to encourage articulate communication around queer subject matter. Cory conducts inclusivity trainings for brands and businesses through gender-free apparel brand, and educational outreach program, The Phluid Project. Cory Wade is proud to be an official LinkedIn Learning instructor for DEI (Diversity, Equity & Inclusion) initiatives.

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 hindrance 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.

Understanding Intersectionality
Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives are an important, but DEI values only scratch the surface of a truly equitable society—particularly since many people belong to more than one marginalized social group, including race, gender, sexuality, age, ability, and socioeconomic status, to name just a few. Gaining a genuine comprehension of varied human experiences requires taking a deeper look, and that's where the concept of intersectionality comes into play. Intersectionality is one of the more important topics in DEI, and in this keynote, DEI expert Cory Wade explains the significance of intersectionality and how it manifests in professional settings and everyday life. Join Cory as they illustrate how you can use intersectionality to promote equality in the world, covering topics like becoming intersectionality conscious, recognizing privilege and inequity, being an effective ally, promoting the incentives of intersectionality, and more.

  • What is Intersectionality?: We will analyze the term, 'intersectionality' in its origins. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, Intersectionality is “The interconnected nature of social categorizations such as race, class, and gender, regarded as creating overlapping and interdependent systems of discrimination or disadvantage.” We will analyze this definition and the work of civil rights advocate, Kimberlé Crenshaw, intersectionality's conceptor.
  • Becoming Intersectionality Conscious: We will discuss why it is crucial for us to be aware of the fact that there isn’t only one type of human being or one type of struggle for that matter. Our diversity spans beyond any standard of “normalcy”.
  • Recognizing Privilege and Inequity: While certain issues concerning privilege in the workplace might make some of us uncomfortable, denying or ignoring it will only make it more prevalent. We will garner an understanding of why it is important for us to become more aware of how privilege can negatively impact our society.
  • The Incentives to Intersectionality: We will discuss the many positive incentives to an intersectionality conscious world. For one, intersectionality awareness gives way for more comprehensive inclusivity. When we recognize how intersecting identities can layer to make up a person's distinct experience and perspective, we can relate to and empathize with people from every walk of life.
  • Effective Allyship: We will learn how to be the most effective allies we can be. An ally is an individual who stands up or speaks out for people or groups that are targeted or discriminated against. Being an ally is about providing support, acceptance and understanding to those living life experiences unique to our own.
  • Fostering Inclusive Actions: We will discuss the "do's and dont's" of intersectionality. We will go over some guidelines on how each one of us can contribute to promoting an intersectionality conscious world where everyone is considered so that equity can thrive amongst us.

LGBTQPIA+ 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.

The Spectrum Of Gender Identity
What is gender? This question is worth considering since our full comprehension of gender has been changing and evolving over time. For a lot of folks, the evolution of gender has proven to be overwhelming, and for some, even a bit challenging and confusing. In this course, Cory Wade guides learners along on the journey towards understanding the full spectrum of gender identity simply and clearly so that we are able to easily understand and relate with gender diverse individuals. We will take a closer look at how our concept of gender has evolved throughout history as well as how gender is perceived and defined today.

  • The Concept of Gender: We will clearly define gender and the role it plays in everyday society. The Merriam-Webster dictionary describes gender as: the behavioral, cultural, or psychological traits typically associated with one sex. That doesn’t mean that gender is informed by one’s biological sex. In other words, our bodies don’t determine our mannerisms or any characteristics beyond our physical attributes. A person’s gender cannot always be determined by the way they look. We will analyze how gender exists in our society through human behavior, our cultural exposure to the world and one’s psychological sense of self.
  • Beyond the Binary: We will discuss gender types beyond 'man' and 'woman' exclusively. We will discuss terms like, 'cisgender', 'non-binary', 'genderqueer', 'transgender', 'pangender' and more. Pronouns: Pronouns are more than just words. They’re a part of who we are. We will discuss why it is crucial for us to understand and respect gender-diverse pronouns if we want to be inclusive towards our transgender, non-binary and gender non-conforming peers. Gender Expression: We will garner an understanding of the way in which an individual might choose to express their gender outwardly. Beyond their personal style, a person could express their gender through their mannerisms, their behavior, through changing their pronouns, or in other various ways. The Gender Debate: Gender is often discussed and debated upon in world politics. We will analyze certain debate points to gain a more well rounded comprehension concerning the global perception of gender. Gender Affirmation: We will discuss the process one might take towards feeling validated in their gender identity. It has to do with a variety of possible steps a person might take in order to align their behavior and their physical appearance with their gender in a genuine and authentic way.

Location: New York, New York