By: Alise Jarmusz – Asst. News Editor
From Jan. 15-23, 2015, the University of Dayton will celebrate and remember the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s life, dreams and actions for justice. The Center for Social Concern and the Office of Multicultural Affairs has created a series of events to get the campus involved, according to UD’s website.
Two of the week’s main events are the Martin Luther King Jr. Day March and Rally, and the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Pledge. The march and rally, which will be held Jan. 21, 2015, will start at 8:30 a.m. in the Office of Multicultural Affairs in Gosiger Hall.
According to the UD website, participants will make signs together during a provided breakfast before heading to the Third Street Bridge where they will join the city of Dayton in a march. The march will end at the Dayton Convention Center, where students can participate in the rally, inauguration and city celebration.
Last year an estimated 2,000 people made the march to the Dayton Convention Center to hear a call to action from U.S. District Judge Walter H. Rice, according to the Dayton Daily News.
Throughout the week, students can also make the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Pledge to complete at least four hours of community service during the spring semester.
Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: ‘What are you doing for others?’”
According to UD’s website, taking the pledge will further his ideals and dreams for the future of America.
Students who are interested in taking the pledge can sign up online at www.udayton.edu/ministry/csc/advocacy/mlk_pledge.php. After filling out the form, participants will receive a printed pledge card in the mail to display or to act as a reminder.
By engaging in community service, students will join participants across the country dedicated to honoring King’s teachings.
“Others around the nation will also be serving their neighbors and communities during the annual MLK Day of Service, which is part of United We Serve, the president’s national call to service initiative. It calls for Americans from all walks of life to work together to provide solutions to our most pressing national problems,” according the website.
The event series also includes a number of panels, celebrations and speakers aimed to highlight King’s movement toward peace, equality and respect.
Sondra Wozniak, a junior finance and international business major, believes the event series will help to break students out the UD “bubble.”
“Especially in the UD bubble, people can get caught up in their own lives. Even though we’re a Marianist school, a scary percentage of us can forget about things outside the bubble pretty easily,” she said. “Having these MLK events, having discussion panels, gives everyone a little reminder that there is, in fact, an outside world and that there are plenty of things we can do as individuals and as a community.”
Wozniak said she also believes the timing of the events are very fitting given current recent events surrounding racial inequality.
“Two of MLK’s biggest points were nonviolence and loving your neighbor. Especially with the recent events in Ferguson, the march and the discussion panels UD is putting on could not come at a better time,” she said.
Highlights of the celebration are featured on the right; the full list of dates and times of the events can be found on the University of Dayton “MLK Celebration” Facebook page, or at www.udayton.edu/ministry/csc/advocacy/mlk_day.php.