The theme “Unity: Not Uniformity” guides the 29th annual Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Symposium, which opened this month and runs through Feb. 26 on the U-M campuses.
The symposium theme, selected by the MLK Jr. Symposium Planning Committee, was inspired by King’s widow, Coretta Scott King. After joining Betty Shabazz, Malcolm X’s widow, on stage at the National Black Political Convention in 1972, Coretta King said we can do a lot more together than we can being separated and divided.
Marc Lamont Hill, a leading intellectual voice and the host of HuffPost Live and Black Entertainment Television News, will present the keynote lecture at 10 a.m. Jan. 19 in Hill Auditorium. It is the centerpiece of the symposium, which presents more than 30 events in January and February. It is one of the top national observances honoring King.
The annual series of lectures, performances and other activities to honor King is initiated by students and guided by the Office of Academic Multicultural Initiatives and the MLK Symposium Planning Committee.
Among the events involving a range of campus sponsors, highlights include:
• The 17th MLK Children and Youth Program, 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Jan. 19 in the Modern Language Building, 812 E. Washington St. Young people from southeast Michigan K-12 communities explore King’s legacy and issues surrounding the civil rights movement through storytelling, small group instruction, creative projects, musical performances and more.
• “Embracing the Art of Change,” 2015 Business & Finance MLK Convocation, 1-3 p.m. Jan. 19, Rackham Auditorium. Graffiti artist, author, entrepreneur and philanthropist Erik Wahl’s performance offers a visual metaphor to the core message of the MLK celebration.
• “Poetic Storytelling: A Spoken Word Performance on Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice on the College Campus,” 4-5:30 p.m. Jan. 19, Rackham Auditorium, with the First Wave Hip Hop and Urban Arts Learning Community. First Wave is a touring ensemble that draws upon the artistry, resources and perspectives of the hip hop generation to produce theater and choreography on pressing social justice issues.
• “The Power of One,” William K. McInally Memorial Lecture with Ndaba Mandela, grandson of Nelson Mandela, 5-6:30 p.m. Jan. 19, Stephen M. Ross School of Business, Blau Auditorium. Ndaba Mandela is co-founder and chairman of the Africa Rising Foundation dedicated to promoting Africa around the world and to increasing its potential for growth through education, employment and corporate alliances.
• Annual Health Sciences MLK Day Lecture, “Unity not Uniformity: A Spotlight on Health Disparities,” noon-1:30 p.m., Dow Auditorium, Towsley Center, University Hospital, with Dr. Marie Chisholm-Burns. She is dean and professor of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center College of Pharmacy and professor of surgery in the College of Medicine. With more than 275 published works and $10 million in external funding as principal investigator, Chisholm-Burns is an accomplished scholar, clinician, researcher, author and administrator.
• Jan. 19: MLK Day of Service, check in 7:45-8:30 a.m. Kochoff Hall, University Center. Register online at www.formstack.com/forms/?1131264-NamxXg7r3J. Trip to Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, 2-5:30 p.m. by bus, registration required, sign up at 2136 University Center.
• Jan. 20: “American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs,” 2 p.m., Kochoff Hall A, University Center; 6-8 p.m., House of Maize & Blue, The Union at Dearborn. Discussion: “Is LGBTQ Rights the new Civil Rights?” 3-4 p.m., The InCLUDE, 2122 University Center.
• Jan. 21: Student panel, “What does assimilation mean to you?” noon-1 p.m., Kochoff Hall A, University Center. Moderated by Professor Arifa Javed. March for Peace with the Black Student Union, 3-4:30 p.m., meet at the University Center stage. “Unsilenced-A Broadside Press Poetry & Spoken Word Celebration in memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., 6-8 p.m., Kochoff Hall B&C, University Center.
• Jan. 22: #ThrowbackThursday “I Have A Dream” Balloon Release, noon-1 p.m., University Center Stage. “Essential Arrival: Michigan’s Indian Immigrants in the 21st Century” film, 2-4 p.m., House of Maize & Blue, The Union at Dearborn; “Brother Outsider: The Life of Bayard Rustin” film, 6-8 p.m., The InCLUDE.
• Jan. 23: Inaugural Engagement Day, 8:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Kochoff Hall, University Center. All week long, “Selma: The Movie” is presented at the Office for Student Engagement, 2136 University Center.
• Jan. 19: MLK Day Service Breakfast, 7-9 a.m., Michigan Rooms A & B, University Center; Service Activities: 9 a.m.-2 p.m., sign up online; formassembly.umflint.edu/2776 Michigan Blood Drive, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., University Center.
• Jan. 20: MLK Film Day, “In Remembrance of Martin,” 9-11 a.m., University Center Kiva. “A Reading of the Letter From Birmingham Jail” film, 12:30-3 p.m., University Center Kiva. “King: A Filmed Record … Montgomery to Memphis,” 4- 8 p.m., University Center Kiva.
• Jan. 21: “Traveling the Road to Golgotha: Lessons Learned from the Last Days and Location of Martin Luther King, Jr.,” noon-2 p.m., lecture with Larry L. Rowley, assistant professor of Afroamerican & African Studies, LSA, U-M, University Center Kiva.
• Jan. 23: “At the River I Stand” film, 10 a.m.-1 p.m., University Center Kiva.