Pride Month 2022: meet Corey, Lucy, Megan and Alessia!

Four more Square Enix staffers share their thoughts on Pride Month, the importance of inclusivity and how everyone can help the LGBTQ+ community.
By Square Enix

The Pride celebrations continue here at Square Enix!

Previously, we introduced three of wonderful colleagues, discussed what Pride month means to them, and celebrated the positive contribution they make to both Square Enix and the world!

Today another group of awesome people share their insights. Before that, however, we wanted to highlight a couple of cool things taking place this month - and how you can get involved.

Firstly, our new range of Pride apparel is still on sale. It features our Pride mascot Mina, and 100% of the profits go to charities GLAAD and Stonewall to support the amazing work they do for LGBTQ+ people around the world.

We’re also celebrating on social media! Head over to Square Enix on Twitter to take part in our Pride giveaway! You can win some awesome prizes - including a personalized sketch of Mina, signed by their creator Toshiyuki Itahana!

Find out more on Twitter:

Now, let’s meet Corey, Lucy, Megan and Alessia.

Corey Chamberlain (He/Him/His) - Sales Analyst

Corey! Please introduce yourself to the Square Enix community!

Hi! I’m Corey, and I identify as gay.

I feel like my love for gaming started just like anyone else did - a young child who had siblings and friends that played all the time, so of course I had to join in! I remember how much I enjoyed gaming and how no matter what was going on in life, it was always a happy moment for me when playing.

I used to think working for Square Enix was one of those dreams that… yeah, it would be nice, but I mean the chances of that happening were the same as becoming the next Lady Gaga or Meryl Streep!

To my surprise, when you put in the work and watch those job postings like a hawk, it really is possible to fulfill a dream career in gaming! A special shout out to my brother who introduced me to FINAL FANTASY when I was younger - I wouldn’t be here with you!

How do you help someone find their Pride?

I think one of the hardest things nowadays is to find someone that is struggling with their identity or coming out to their friends and family. This is mainly because I hid myself away all through school and didn’t come out on my own terms - my parents found out by accident.

When I decided to finally come out as a result, all my peers rooted for me and were happy for me to be able to be myself and free - even people I weren’t close to!

Of course, not everyone is guaranteed to have that same support sadly. However, I like to think the freedom you have to be who you are is what is most important in your lifetime. Be yourself, help others who may struggle with the same issues you faced, and just remember there is, and always will be, people who care about you.

You are not alone!

Are there any organizations you would suggest people support?

Here’s the wonderful thing - there are SO MANY charities and organizations out there that work hard to ensure the LGBT+ community gets the help, the justice, and the knowledge they need. To name a few: GLAAD, Human Rights Campaign, The Trevor Project, and more.

To find local organizations, you’re only a Google search away! The trick to ensuring you have the best impact possible is to take time to also research which companies are doing the opposite and stripping away our rights - you’d be surprised how many corporations make donations to the wrong people!

Do you have a message that you want people to hear?

Your life is precious. Don’t waste time pretending to be anyone than yourself.

Listen to your heart, shine brighter than a diamond, and enjoy your life to the fullest. Fill your friend circle with those who truly care about the REAL you and hold them close. You are so special, and no one can ever say otherwise. I wish you the happiness you deserve.

Happy Pride Month!

Lucy Hale (She/Her) - Video Creator

Please introduce yourself to the Square Enix community!

Hey! I'm Lucy - Host and Video Producer at Square Enix External Studios.

I've worked on titles such as Outriders and Just Cause, and a game that many consider an LGBTQIA+ staple: Life is Strange!

Why do you think Pride Month is important?

Pride is a time of reflection, combined with a feverous celebration.

It allows us a space to reflect on the Stonewall Riots 50 years ago, which changed gay rights forever, remember the atrocities that were committed against the community and the trailblazers that led us forward.

Equally, it's a celebration of love in all of its forms, how far LGBTQIA+ rights have come, and optimism for improving the future of queer people.

How do you celebrate Pride month?

Since moving to London, I love getting involved with the parade that marches through our city.

Seeing and interacting with such a diverse and beautiful range of people (plus all of the incredible rainbow fashion!) is a great vibe.

Square Enix also has a passionate internal Pride team that puts on events for employees during Pride month, and I'm thankful to work for a company that fosters an inclusive environment.

Finally, I wear as much rainbow eye makeup as I can!

Do you have a message that you want people to hear?

Never shrink yourself down to fit in a heteronormative society. We need to hear the voices and experiences of people from all walks of life, all orientations, all backgrounds, all ethnicities, all social classes, all genders.

Be visible, be loud, be present. You make both the video games industry, and this entire planet we share as a home, a better place to enjoy.

Megan Pelt (She/Her/Hers) - Associate Manager, Digital Sales

Hi Megan - how did your career in gaming get started?

My career in gaming began when I was a kid staying up late playing the first KINGDOM HEARTS. I knew I’d give anything to work with titles like these for a living.

But truly my career began with the QA Team taking a chance on me - I am forever grateful as my career has grown with Square Enix since then!

Why do you think Pride Month is important?

Pride month is more than just a celebration of who we are - it is a time to reflect on those who came before us and paved the way to a future where we can be ourselves. We owe much of what this month means to us today to voices like Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera.

Is there anyone in the LGBTQ+ community that inspires you?

I’m inspired every day by my LGBTQ+ peers in the gaming industry.

From fellow co-workers to indie developers who bring their art to life in the gaming industry, I am constantly surrounded by examples of how queer people create, shape, and influence modern games.

How do you celebrate Pride month?

Jokingly, I would answer that I rise at dawn on June 1 to bake rainbow cupcakes, but who has that energy?

My favorite way to celebrate is through different makeup looks or incorporating colors of the rainbow or bi flags into my outfits during the month. Subtle nods to who I am as a person are my favorite way to express myself!

Alessia Amitrano (They/Them) - Senior Front End Web Developer

Hi Alessia! Please introduce yourself to the Square Enix community!

I was born and raised in Italy and moved to the UK in early 2018. I came out as gay as a teenager but around three years ago, I started to identify as queer non-binary.

My career in gaming began when I applied for my current role as Web Developer at Square Enix. I hope will last for many years to come!

Why do you think Pride Month is important?

I think Pride month is fundamental to increase visibility of the LGBTQ+ community, educate the whole of society about diversity and inclusion and start important conversations.

Is there anyone in the LGBTQ+ community that inspires you?

My biggest source of inspiration is RuPaul Charles. The messages of self-love and acceptance he spreads were fundamental in my process of growth as a queer person.

He made me understand that we are all unique and have every right to exist in our own special way. And nobody can take that away from us.

How do you celebrate Pride month?

Pride month should be seen as an opportunity to educate people, to be kind to one another, ask questions and listen without prejudice. Ultimately, it should promote an environment of acceptance in which we can all be equal in our diversity.

Are there any organizations you would suggest people support?

I would recommend a quick web search to find your local LGBTQ+ Youth Support charities. It’s important to support young vulnerable members of the LGBTQ+ community who might struggle with family, school, etc.

In the UK, you can donate to or volunteer for Mosaic LGBTQ+ or The Proud Trust.

Do you have a message that you want people to hear?

Don’t be afraid to ask or to listen. Be kind.

Thanks to Corey, Lucy, Megan and Alessia.

We’re celebrating Pride throughout June, so make sure you follow Square Enix on social media to find out how to take part!