The University of Lynchburg is paying tribute to the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in 2022 by honoring the past, celebrating the present, and inspiring the future.
MLK Week on campus will kick off on Jan. 24 — the first Monday of the Spring 2022 semester — with an event dedicated to King’s legacy as an orator. Students, faculty, and staff will recite some of his most memorable speeches starting at 3 p.m. in Pete’s Place in the Drysdale Student Center.
That’ll also launch the Dream Big Book Drive, which will collect new and gently used books for the Jubilee Family Development Center through the end of February. Books for the drive can be dropped off at the Flynn Multicultural Center, Knight-Capron Library, or the Wilmer Writing Center.
Then, on Wednesday, Jan. 26, the Student Diversity Council will honor the past with a showing of “King: A Filmed Record … Montgomery to Memphis” at the Hall Campus Center Memorial Ballroom. The film will start at 7 p.m.
Originally shown as a limited release in 1970, the documentary gives a firsthand look into King’s civil rights work using contextualized newsreel footage.
A Unity March through campus on Friday, Jan. 28, will close out the week, celebrating and continuing the peaceful marches of the civil rights movement. Marching and singing will begin at 3 p.m. at Snidow Chapel and will end at the Victory Bell Tower.
The theme of “Honoring the Past, Celebrating the Present, and Inspiring the Future” will continue into Black History Month, with speakers addressing a variety of anti-racist equity and inclusion topics on campus and virtually.
A series of Courageous Conversations throughout the month will examine how racism impacts interpersonal relationships and emotional well-being. Those conversations will occur virtually as follows:
- Wednesday, Feb. 9, 3 p.m.: “How Everyone, Including White People, Can Take Responsibility and be Anti-Racist” with Brian Sorge.
- Wednesday, Feb. 16, 3 p.m.: “Implicit Bias and Microaggressions Taking Place on Campus” with Dr. Tammy Hodo.
- Wednesday, Feb. 23, 6:30 p.m.: “Two Steps Forward and Three Steps Back: Examining the Relationship between Racism and Generational Trauma” with Dr. Brenda Lee.
Vice President for Inclusive Excellence Dr. Robert Canida, who launched the Courageous Conversations in 2020, said they’ve transformed words into action in classrooms, and organizers aim to open up that dialogue even more.
Historic interpreter and advocate Cheyney McKnight and historian Dr. Kelley Fanto Deetz will share their expertise as guest speakers at “History as Power: Racial Reconciliation and Restorative Justice through Storytelling” at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 24, in the Hall Campus Center Memorial Ballroom.
All events are free and open to the public. Masks are required inside any campus building.
For more information, email the Office of Equity and Inclusion at email@example.com.