2022 Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration

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Minneapolis College will host a virtual celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. on Thursday, January 20 to encourage reflection on King’s dedication to equality and the civil rights movement.

“I am mindful of wanting to make King contemporary,” said African American Empowerment Program Coordinator Charles Watson. “The legacy of Dr. King lives on. King is still relevant and timely in this day and age.”

During the first portion of the event from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m., there will be a virtual student art exhibit, performances by the Minneapolis College choir and the celebration of the College’s Second Annual Oratorical Contest.

This year’s contest showcase is the “centerpiece of the program” and focuses on the power of the vote and using one’s voice. The student winners will receive $1,000 scholarships to Minneapolis College. “You put a megaphone or a microphone in someone’s hand to amplify their voice,” said Watson. “We are going to put the microphone in the hands of Minneapolis College students to amplify their voices around voting.”

The MLK Event Committee has invited Professor of Practice for African American and African Diaspora Studies at Indiana University Raymond Wise, Ph.D to be an expert commentator for the Oratorical Contest showcase.

“We are playing with this metaphor of voice,” said Watson. “[The metaphor] of finding one's voice and articulating one’s voice in the context of a system seeking to silence your voice.” The College Choir’s performances will be in the theme of Amplifying Beloved Community, which is also the theme for this year’s event.

Then, following a two-hour break, the celebration will continue from 3 until 4 p.m. with a virtual Town Hall Meeting focused on social justice and racial healing. The conversation will be facilitated by Minneapolis College President Sharon Pierce and Wise. The event will conclude with questions from attendees.

Visit the MLK Celebration page to register for the event.

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