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UK MLK Center Celebrates Martin Luther King Jr. Day

by Gail Hairston

(Jan. 15, 2015) — As Martin Luther King Jr. Day approaches, the University of Kentucky Martin Luther King Center is pursuing distinctive ways to highlight King’s legacy. Through Monday, Jan. 19, the center is offering a variety of events and opportunities that honor King’s dream and convey how important it is to keep his dream alive. King strived to eradicate social injustice, violence and racism, and the campus wants to celebrate that dream.

Martin Luther King Jr.The film “Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.” was shown Wednesday. For this year’s celebration of King’s actual birthday, Jan. 15, the center is celebrating and reflecting on the civil rights leader’s famous “I Have a Dream Speech.” The event begins Thursday with a silent march at the King Center at 5 p.m. A vigil and program is set for 5:30 p.m. in the Student Center Small Ballroom.

The silent march includes a north campus tour with student actors recreating scenes that represent various excerpts from King’s speech. Some scenes will respectfully reflect segregation, various civil rights movements, and most importantly unity and freedom. A program of discussion and reflection on the legacy of King’s dream and how it relates to our world today follows. The conversation will be led by Vice President of Student Affairs Robert Mock and King Center student ambassadors.

The MLK Diversity Fair on Friday, Jan. 16, affords UK students, faculty, and staff the opportunity to get involved, explore diversity, seek community service opportunities and come together to celebrate social justice. The fair, slated 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Student Center Small Ballroom, will include a variety of organizations on campus and community service sites off campus that promote diversity and function under Martin Luther King’s vision of equality and inclusivity.

The Center for Community Outreach presents Martin Luther King Jr. National Day of Service on Saturday, Jan. 17, at 10 a.m. at the Lyric Theater, near downtown Lexington. UK will participate in the Martin Luther King Jr. National Day of Service for the third year in a row. Anyone with an interest in social justice, service or issues facing the city of Lexington is invited to get involved. Fourteen sites, including Habitat for Humanity, the International Book Project and the Hope Lodge, are on the agenda. Students can sign up here. All volunteers should meet at the Lyric Theater between 10 and 10:45 a.m. Jan. 17. Shuttles will run regularly from the parking lots of the Student Center and W.T. Young Library to the Lyric. T-shirts and food will be provided.

For more updates and information, follow @UKMLKServDay on Twitter and Instagram and like them on Facebook.