UE Hosting 2022 MLK Celebration

Posted: Friday, December 17, 2021

The University of Evansville (UE) will host a celebration for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on January 17, 2022. The event will include activities throughout the day for the campus community as well as the public. Two events in particular will have live streaming availability for those unable to attend in-person. The 2022 theme is “Unrelenting Faith” and highlights one of King’s famous quotes, “Faith is taking the first step even when you cannot see the whole staircase.” 

The schedule of events is available below. For full details, please visit evansville.edu/MLK

Symbolic March – January 1-17, 2022 

During the Civil Rights March of 1965, activists gathered in Selma, Alabama, to complete a 54-mile trek to the state capital in Montgomery. In recognition of this historical event, UE invites everyone to participate in 54 Miles to Social Change, a virtual march that raises awareness for social injustice in the United States. Join from anywhere in the world by logging miles spent walking, running, biking, or swimming. Miles 1-53 will be completed virtually, and the 54th mile will be completed together on the day of the celebration. 

The virtual march has a $15 registration fee, and all proceeds will go directly towards Journey to Justice scholarships for students expressing financial need. Participants will also receive a T-shirt to celebrate the march. To register, visit https://runsignup.com/Race/IN/Evansville/54MilestoSocialChange

Grand Opening of the Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion – 10:30 a.m. 

To begin the celebration, UE will hold a ribbon cutting for the Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, as well as the Multicultural Student Commons. This will take place on the second floor of Ridgway University Center. 

Rally – 11:15 a.m. 

The rally will be held in Meeks Family Fieldhouse, located inside Carson Center off Walnut Street. It will recap the significance of the celebration and include remarks from Christopher M. Pietruszkiewicz, president of UE; Rob Shelby, PhD, chief diversity officer; Abagail Catania, assistant director of diversity recruitment and programming; and the president of the Black Student Union. 

Symbolic March – 11:45 a.m. 

After the rally, UE invites everyone to complete the 54th Mile to Social Change together. The march will begin at Meeks Family Fieldhouse and down nearby streets before returning to campus at Ridgway University Center. 

Local Leaders Panel Discussion – 1:00 p.m. 

This insightful discussion will include leaders from the Evansville community. The panel will be led by Melissa Moore, a UE alumna and member of the Legal Aid Society Board of Vanderburgh County. If you are unable to attend in-person, you can stream the discussion live on the Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion’s Facebook page at facebook.com/uecenterdei

Community Service – 2:00 p.m. 

UE will provide the opportunity to participate in one of several community service projects, and the impact will last long beyond the celebration. Several departments and student organizations will be spearheading or supporting the projects, which will be announced on the day of the event. 

Lectureship – 6:00 p.m. 

Each year, the Martin Luther King Lectureship is made possible by the generous support of William G. and Rose M. Mays. The lectureship will be held in Eykamp Hall, located on the second floor of Ridgway University Center. You may also live-stream it at evansville.edu/live

The 2022 lectureship will feature keynote speaker Dr. Lerone A. Martin. Beginning in 2022, Martin will become the faculty director for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute at Stanford University. The King Institute supports a broad range of educational activities illuminating Dr. King’s life and the movements he inspired. 

Martin is also the author of the award-winning Preaching on Wax: The Phonograph and the Making of Modern African American Religion, which tracks the role of the phonograph in the shaping of African American religion, culture, and politics during the first half of the twentieth century. 

After the lectureship, UE will present the 2022 Mays Legacy Award as well as the inaugural Rising Star Award.

7:00 p.m. - Reception 

Following the lectureship, a reception with light refreshments will be held outside Eykamp Hall in the Class of 1959 Gallery. 

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