By Christian Bustos
On Jan. 21, 2023, EKU’s Center for Inclusive Excellence and Global Engagement (CIEGE), the Division of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Student Life and Exceptional Eastern Experience (E3) hosted the MLK Community Day on campus.
“This is our way of honoring Martin Luther King Jr. He lived a life that left a legacy, so now we have the opportunity to bring our community together in service,” said Ron Jackson, director of CIEGE.
Martin Luther King Jr. Day fell on Monday, Jan. 16, the day before EKU’s spring semester started. Therefore, EKU’s MLK Community Day was scheduled for later in the week to encourage student participation. The event started with faculty and student speakers.
“Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. is more than just quoting him and saying his ideals and movements were historic and monumental,” said Dante Webb, a junior majoring in aviation management. “To celebrate Dr. King, we must give back to the community.”
Service projects throughout the day included making care packages for Liberty Place Recovery Center for Women, writing notes of encouragement for the packages, and a mural painting in the Powell Building.
“I really enjoyed writing letters and empowering people for the organization. It is meaningful because you truly never know where people are in their lives, and empowering them with kind and lovely words helps them find the strength to pull through,” said Jennifer Lemus, a junior social work major.
The vision of CIEGE is for EKU students to be inclusive thinkers who are confident, responsible and global-minded achievers. CIEGE facilitates a strong sense of belonging from admission to graduation and beyond through programs and events, such as the MLK Community Day.
“This day is significant because it allows our campus community some time to come back together and then build momentum to move us into Black History Month,” said Rae Loftis, EKU’s executive director of diversity and development. “We continue to honor the legacy of MLK, because it is important to know where we’ve come from and honor those who are our guiding lights in justice and equity work.”
In addition to hosting the MLK event, CIEGE and the Division of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion have announced a robust schedule of events to commemorate Black History Month.