Yale University Honors the Legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Yale University will mark the national holiday commemorating the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a weekend of events titled “The Beloved Community,” January 18–21.

Yale University will mark the national holiday commemorating the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a weekend of events titled “The Beloved Community,” January 18–21.

Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, June 15, 1964, at Yale University. King received an honorary LL.D degree at Yale’s 263rd commencement.

These events are free and open to the public.

On January 18 at 8 p.m., the focus will be on the importance of education. Norman Newberg, adjunct associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education, will present a talk titled “Inner-City Youth and the Promise of a College Education.” His lecture will deal with the 112 African-American high school students from Philadelphia who were offered an all-expenses-paid college education, funded by philanthropist George Weiss through his Say Yes to Education Foundation. This event will be held at Slifka Center for Jewish Life at Yale, 80 Wall St.

On January 19 at 7 p.m., a wide range of religious and ethnic organizations and local spiritual leaders will assemble in Battell Chapel, corner of Elm and College streets, for a program of music and inspirational readings titled “Fulfilling the Dream: Intercultural Reflections on Dr. King.” Participants will include the Yale Gospel Choir, Jews for Justice, Muslim Student Association and local spiritual leaders. 

“Environmental Injustice: The Other Inconvenient Truth” will be presented by environmentalist Jerome Ringo on January 20 at 2 p.m. in the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, 170 Whitney Ave. Ringo is past chair of the board of the National Wildlife Federation. His talk is the seventh annual Arnold J. Alderman Memorial Lecture. 

The Afro-American Cultural Center at Yale will host “The Fannie Lou Hamer Story,” a play depicting the struggles of a courageous woman to gain the right for African Americans to vote. Singer/actress Mzuri will present this one-person show at 4:30 p.m. on January 20 at the center, 211 Park St.

Programs are scheduled throughout the day on January 21, beginning with a conference at the Wexler-Grant Community School, featuring workshops and performances for youth and adults, 8 a.m.–1 p.m. Breakfast and lunch will be provided. From 9 a.m. to noon, the public is invited to participate in service projects organized by Dwight Hall at Yale. These projects include voter registration, Habitat for Humanity, the Food Bank and more. Interested volunteers will gather at Dwight Hall, 67 High St., at 9 a.m. At 12:30 p.m., volunteers will get together for lunch and a discussion of their community service activities.

Yale faculty members Jonathan Holloway (History, African American Studies), Emilie Townes (Divinity School) and Andre Willis (Divinity School) will take part in a panel titled “On Hope: Imagination, Optimism and Race in America” at the Afro-American Cultural Center, 211 Park St., at 3 p.m.

The day will close with a candlelight “Vespers for Peace” service in Dwight Chapel at 8 p.m. Music and meditations will focus on peace and justice in honor of the legacy of Dr. King. Dwight Chapel is in Dwight Hall on Old Campus.

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Media Contact

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