Emory & Henry College Honors Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day with Service and Convocation

by Haley Arni

Emory & Henry College celebrates the life of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on Monday, January 16 by providing students, staff and faculty an opportunity to learn more about civil rights, race relations and the experiences of minorities who face discrimination in America through presentations on campus throughout the day in a program that calls on attendees to “Be the Face of Change” and the Day of Service provided by students, faculty and staff from the School of Health Science.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Convocation (Jan. 16, 2023)

See photos from the day

The College offers students a day free from their usual classes by offering a suite of presentations from a variety of speakers. The convocation begins at 9 a.m. at the McGlothlin Center for the Arts in the Kennedy~Reedy Theatre. The morning session of the “Be the Face of Change” convocation will feature keynote speaker Brooklyn Sawyers Belk, ’02, and her presentation, “Words Matter: Changing Your Race Relations through your Words” following an introduction from Dr. Jerry Jones, a performance by the Emory & Henry Choir and opening remarks from College President John W. Wells.

“Through a survey of United States Court decisions, we will evaluate the evolution of race relations in America through the Supreme Court’s words. With that backdrop, we will discuss how our words can change our race relations one conversation at a time so that we are the living change we want to see,” said Belk.

Following the keynote and a breakout session with Belk, students will have the opportunity to break for lunch before additional breakout sessions with presenters including Assistant Professor of Hispanic Studies Dr. Oleski Miranda Navarro, Director of Housing & Residence Life Darryl Glenn, Jenna Lyn, M.D. MHA Ballad Health, Director of New Student Experience Fred George, Director of Campus Recreation Rakeem Rutherford and Education Program Director at Relay Graduate School of Education Brandi Kent.

The closing keynote speaker of the “Be the Face of Change” Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day convocation is Joaquín Zihuatanejo. His keynote speech will be presented at the Black Box Theatre in the McGlothlin Center for the Arts on the Emory campus. Zihuatanejo is a world poetry slam champion, educator and advocate. He will be presenting “Written All Over Your Face: How a Barrio Boy Became an Agent for Change,” an interactive and engaging blend of slam poetry, keynote speech and quick writing activity. Zihuatanejo’s manic, hilarious and passionate performance blurs the lines between poetry, theatre and dramatic monologue.

“The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. annual convocation is a moving program for the campus and community of Emory & Henry College,” said Vice President of Student Affairs and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging, John Holloway. “Each year this dynamic event draws the interest of our students, staff and faculty. We collectively celebrate and honor the social justice teachings of Dr. King.”

In addition to the convocation, graduate students from the School of Health Sciences and faculty and staff from the School of Nursing at the Health Sciences campus in Marion, Va., will be conducting a Day of Service in honor of Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, providing community service throughout Marion and Smyth County.

Students at Emory & Henry College Health Sciences Campus will demonstrate their greatness as they honor the life and legacy of Dr. King while providing service to deserving agencies. Students will learn more about Dr. King, the Civil Rights Movement and why serving is one way that his family feels people can best honor him. Following the opening session students, faculty and staff will be placed in interprofessional groups. They will be assigned to one of the sites that have been selected, providing three and a half hours of service at their site after they learn about the mission, goals and outreach of the organization.

According to Dr. King, “Everyone can be great because anyone can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.”

Partial funding for the School of Health Sciences event is provided by a grant received from the Virginia Service Foundation. For more information about the Day of Service in honor of Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., contact Dean of Student Affairs and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging at the School of Health Sciences Tracey Wright at (276) 944-6490 or tlwright@ehc.edu.

To learn more about the College’s Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Convocation “Be the Face of Change” on the Emory campus, you can visit www.ehc.edu/mlk23 or contact Director of Inclusion, Community Development & Belonging Dr. Jill Wendt at jwendt@ehc.edu. Both keynotes will be open to the public and attendance is free. In addition, both keynotes will be streamed to the Emory & Henry College YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/@EmoryHenryCollege.

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  • <div class="lw_news_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/news/521-emory-henry-college-lands-in-four-national"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/83/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,1043,2133,3174/4542_Pocket-Folder-Cover-RGB_1_4.rev.1536594635.webp 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/83/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,1043,2133,3174/4542_Pocket-Folder-Cover-RGB_1_4.rev.1536594635.webp 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/83/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,1043,2133,3174/4542_Pocket-Folder-Cover-RGB_1_4.rev.1536594635.webp 3x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/gid/83/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,1043,2133,3174/4542_Pocket-Folder-Cover-RGB_1_4.rev.1536594635.jpg 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/83/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,1043,2133,3174/4542_Pocket-Folder-Cover-RGB_1_4.rev.1536594635.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/83/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,1043,2133,3174/4542_Pocket-Folder-Cover-RGB_1_4.rev.1536594635.jpg 3x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/83/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,1043,2133,3174/4542_Pocket-Folder-Cover-RGB_1_4.rev.1536594635.jpg" alt="Emory & Henry College campus view pictured here was ranked as one of the best liberal arts colleges by U.S. News & World Report." width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/83/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,1043,2133,3174/4542_Pocket-Folder-Cover-RGB_1_4.rev.1536594635.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/83/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,1043,2133,3174/4542_Pocket-Folder-Cover-RGB_1_4.rev.1536594635.jpg 3x" data-max-w="2133" data-max-h="2131" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </a></span></div><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_news_headline"><a href="/live/news/521-emory-henry-college-lands-in-four-national">Emory & Henry College Lands in Four National College Rankings</a></h4><div class="lw_news_summary"> Emory & Henry College ranks among the best liberal arts colleges in the United States, according to the annual list of rankings released this week by <em>U.S. News & World Report, Best Colleges</em>. <a href="/live/news/521-emory-henry-college-lands-in-four-national" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div></div>