June 20, 2023

Cengage Group Employees Grow with Pride

At Cengage Group, we believe in creating an inclusive workplace where everyone feels valued and supported. That's why we're proud to have our Pride Employee Resource Group (ERG) as a crucial part of our company culture. Our Pride ERG’s mission is to facilitate an inclusive, empowering culture that supports LGBTQIA+ employees and allies by offering educational insight, resources, networking opportunities and support.

With Pride Month now upon us, we want to take this opportunity to highlight the importance of our Pride ERG and the impact it has on the overall employee experience at Cengage Group. Centered around this year’s theme Grow with Pride, there are several employee events planned throughout June including a presentation on drag history, a paint and sip, a panel discussion focused on how colleagues have grown into their identities, an author talk with Kid Congo Powers and Dr. Richard T. Rodriguez, and a special visit from drag superstar Latrice Royale.  

Read on to learn more from five Pride ERG members about the difference that our Pride ERG has made in their personal and professional lives.


Cengage group pride month empoyee celebration

Helping New Employees Feel Connected

Marco K., Director of Customer Insights Research, recently joined Cengage Group and was thankful to discover our Pride ERG. “I found a supportive, understanding community in the Pride ERG which helped me navigate my new team and made my transition into my new role much easier. Being part of the ERG helped me make connections across the company and gave me a better understanding of our company culture. For me, the Pride ERG served as a safe space when things got tough at work or when national and international news meant I needed someone to talk to who understood my fears and struggles. Having access to so many wonderful people who are advocates for each other and for our community and company has been amazing.” 


Marco Celebrates Pride Month

Creating a Supportive Community

Elizabeth H., Junior Graphic Designer, appreciates the community that is built through our Pride ERG. “It’s really helped me feel that I’m not alone in my experiences as a queer person at work. I’ve enjoyed seeing everyone chat and find solidarity together.” This month Elizabeth is looking forward to “celebrating with my friends, getting dressed up, and going out with my girlfriend.” For anyone who is struggling to bring their whole selves to work, Elizabeth said, “being authentic is freedom. It can be scary to express yourself, but once you do, the whole world opens up to you.” 


Cengage Group celebrates pride month with elizabeth

“The Pride ERG has created a sense of community, support and belonging,” adds Erin J., Associate Digital Project Manager. “I have met amazing people through this ERG that work in many different areas of Cengage Group. This is the first time I’ve had something like this at a workplace and it definitely feels very special.” 

Improving Company Culture and the Employee Experience

Ciree L., Enrollment Representative, said that “the Pride ERG has significantly impacted my experience and the experiences of many employees within the organization. Various initiatives have fostered a sense of community, providing a safe space for individuals to connect, share their experiences and find support. This has not only helped LGBTQIA+ employees feel a greater sense of belonging, but it has also contributed to a more cohesive and inclusive workplace culture overall. The ERG’s efforts have positively influenced policies, practices and procedures, thus ensuring that Cengage Group remains committed to providing equal opportunities and support for all employees. This leads to enhanced overall employee engagement, retention and satisfaction within the organization.” 

Ciree shared that “Cengage Group’s culture of acceptance, respect and empowerment for the LGBTQIA+ workforce is the best I've ever encountered! I professionally transitioned during my time here and while the Pride ERG, HR and the policies that are in place were important, one individual stands out for making my transition comfortable and easy: my manager, Angela S. In the kindest, most thoughtful way, she was the first person in the company to approach me and ask if there was anything she could do for me, any resources she could direct me to - and she did. As a manager, she’s always been there for me, supporting me through the completion of my bachelor’s degree, my professional development and at times, just discussing our families. Her willingness to reach out to me, and to support me through my transition was a huge factor in feeling comfortable as Ciree at work. I am forever grateful!” 


Celebrating Pride in June

Creating a Safe Space to Be Yourself

John O., Certified Customer Technical Support Representative, shares that the Pride ERG makes him feel welcomed and wanted. “It’s wonderful to be in a space where you are celebrated and not just a number. The ERG made it their business to ensure that we have a space to be ourselves in a professional environment. Also, being a part of this group has opened up space to discuss personal and social issues with open minded people.” John adds that, “since joining the LGBTQIA+ community, I learned what it means to be myself. Through our daily lives, we put on masks for various people, however, with Pride, we adore the fact that we are not a monolithic experience. In Pride, we realize that you are at your best when you are yourself. Because of this, we celebrate you.” 


John Celebrates Pride Month

John believes that “oral history is the best form of history. To raise awareness, I believe the simple art of conversation can make a difference. Conversing with your peers who are a part of the LGBTQAI+ community by asking them about their stories and listening to lived experiences can make you so aware about the world around you.”

Creating Allies and Spreading Awareness During Pride Month

“After I came out as bisexual, I noticed a shift in how others saw me and how they would erase my identity, because it was uncomfortable for them. Today, I tell my story and live my life openly to help others feel more comfortable being their full selves and know that they have a strong advocate in me,” says Marco. “As a leader, I try to listen to others, advocate for them whenever I can and be true to myself, even if it isn’t always easy. I don’t always get it right, but I try to make sure it is always on my mind.” 

Marco adds, “We are living through a scary and frightening time to be seen as different. We really need allies and advocates. If you don’t know how to get started, you can begin by listening and offering your support. It might not seem like a lot, but I can promise you it means the world. The allies who have made the greatest contribution to my life and my happiness have done so by standing with me and lending their ear as well as their advocacy.”

“Pride Month is a protest as well as a celebration,” says Erin. “The reality of being LGBTQIA+ in today’s environment is very challenging. Please support, protect and advocate for your LGBTQIA+ coworkers. We are a beautiful, vibrant, amazing group of people who are living our truth. It is such a special community full of loving, brave, incredible people who need support and protection.” 


Erin celebrates pride month in june

Learn More

By celebrating diversity and fostering a culture of inclusivity, we can create a workplace where everyone can thrive and reach their full potential. If you’re interested in knowing more about what it’s like to work at Cengage Group, read more Employee Experiences and visit our Careers page to view open positions.