Prairie majored in music at Puget Sound. Hailing from eastern Oregon, Prairie spent her junior year studying abroad in Milan, Italy. She was the 2003 recipient of the LGBT Leadership Scholarship and a past co-president of B-GLAD.

Prairie played the clarinet in the University Wind Ensemble and was involved in several organizations on campus including the UPS United Methodist Fellowship, FreakOut (social justice organization), Drummers For Peace (anti-war organization), and Tacoma United For Fairness (TUFF) in addition to her involvement with B-GLAD.

In her experience, "pretty much everyone is sensitive [to LGBT issues]." She feels that her involvement in several groups and the presence of the Safe Zone Project contributed to her positive experience at Puget Sound and aided in her coming out process.

Speaking about the Safe Zone Project, she said that "whether or not you actually talk to a person about your life, you know they are a safe person."