Yale to Celebrate the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Yale University will honor the memory of the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. from January 12 to 16.

All events are open to the public and free, unless otherwise noted.

The commemoration will begin with a reception hosted by the Yale School of Public Health Minority Advisory Committee on January 12, 4–5 p.m., LEPH lounge, 60 College St.

At 5 p.m. on January 12, several Yale offices will co-sponsor “Community Health Forum: Equity in Our Time,” in conjunction with several non-Yale organizations. The forum will take place at Immanuel Missionary Baptist Church, 1324 Chapel St. Participants will include Yale School of Nursing Dean Margaret Grey and Harlan Krumholz, professor of Epidemiology and Public Health and the Harold J. Hines Jr. Professor of Internal Medicine.

On January 13, the Alturas Duo will perform a concert of classical music, Latin American folk rhythms and modern works in Sudler Recital Hall, 100 Wall St. at 8 p.m. This concert will feature works inspired by political struggles against dictatorship in South America, in honor of Dr. King’s efforts to promote freedom and justice.

On Jan. 14, Yale and New Haven musicians will combine to present the fourth annual MLK Jr. Gospel Extravaganza, featuring song, dance and readings from the work of Dr. King. The concert will take place in Battell Chapel, corner of College and Elm streets, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $15; $10 for students.

The Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History will host its 10th annual commemoration of “Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Legacy of Environmental and Social Justice,” throughout the afternoon on January 15 and from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Jan. 16. The event includes music, dance, educational activities for all ages, storytelling, poetry slams and a drum circle. The complete schedule is posted at www.peabody.yale.edu.

On Jan. 15 at 5 p.m., Bernice Johnson Reagon, founder of the acclaimed African American women’s a cappella ensemble, Sweet Honey in the Rock, will deliver the fifth annual Arnold J. Alderman Memorial Lecture, “And There Are Those of Us Who Straddle… Lessons from the Civil Rights Movement.” Reagon is professor emeritus of history at American University and curator emeritus at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. A scholar, teacher and artist, she has been given the Heinz Award for the Arts and Humanities, the Presidential Medal for contributions to public understanding of the humanities and a MacArthur Fellowship.

Monday, January 16, is the national holiday honoring King. Yale will offer several special events to mark the day. From 9 to 11 a.m., the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences’ Office for Diversity and Equal Opportunity and the McDougal Graduate Student Center will host a jazz brunch at 320 York St., with live music and refreshments, followed by opportunities to volunteer for community service projects in New Haven.

Volunteers are also welcome to assist the Yale College and Yale Law School chapters of Habitat for Humanity in New Haven, beginning at 9:30 a.m. at the Rose Community Center, 101 Ashmun St. After enjoying donuts and coffee, volunteers will go to three building sites to work until 2:30 p.m. Lunch will be provided.

At noon, a documentary, “The Children’s March,” will be screened in the Rose Community Center, 101 Ashmun St. Produced by the Southern Poverty Law Center, the film traces events in 1963, when thousands of elementary, middle and high school students gathered in Birmingham, Alabama, to protest segregation. Their actions energized the Civil Rights movement.

Rosa Parks, who died in October 2005, will be remembered, and her legacy will be discussed at 3 p.m. in the Afro-American Cultural Center, 211 Park St. at a session titled “On Heroism: A Tribute to Rosa Parks.”

Davenport College will hold a Master’s Tea titled “‘Until you are what you ought to be’: Remembering King; Rekindling Hope,” presented by Jan Willis, professor of religion and social sciences at Wesleyan University, at 4 p.m., 248 York St. Willis has studied and taught Buddhism for 25 years. Her most recent book is a memoir, “Dreaming Me: An African American Woman’s Spiritual Journey.”

Throughout the weekend, creative writing inspired by the words of Dr. King and written by residents of New Haven, including Yale students, staff and faculty, will be exhibited in the Hall of Graduate Studies, 320 York St.

In addition, members of the Yale community will volunteer at a wide range of agencies, including the CT Food Bank, the Ronald McDonald House, the Yale Peabody Museum and other non-profit organizations.

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Media Contact

Gila Reinstein: gila.reinstein@yale.edu, 203-432-1325