Eastern Michigan University

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Schedule of Events

"One of the great liabilities of history is that all too many people fail to remain awake through great periods of social change . . . but today our very survival depends on our ability to stay awake, to adjust to new ideas, to remain vigilant, and to face the challenge of change."

--Martin Luther King, Jr.

Thursday, January 15, 2015 - Celebration Kickoff


Martin Luther King Commemorative March
North entrance of Student Center
Gathering Time: 5:45 pm
March Time:  6:00 pm

Join members of the university community as we march across campus and reflect upon the historical significance of EMU buildings and landmarks and the stalwarts for which they were named. Marchers will gather on the north side of the Student Center at 5:45 pm. Hot chocolate will be provided.


Opening Celebration Discussion
Student Center Auditorium
Begins immediately following the Commemoration March

Continuing the movement toward social justice requires both knowledge of, and critical thinking about the past and present realities of African peoples around the world. Using clips from the documentary, "Hidden Colors 2", a distinguished panel will engage participants in a discussion aimed toward developing and implementing solutions to current social, educational, and economic issues impacting African-Americans and the wider community. This event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.


Friday, January 16, 2015


MLK Day of Service
Student Center Ballroom
9:00 am - 2:00 pm

Join VISION for a morning of service with local non-profits! Meet in the Student Center Ballroom on the 2nd floor to check in and learn more about the issue you will be addressing and the organization you will be helping. Transportation will be provided! Sign up to volunteer here! Many of these site will be volunteering outside so please dress appropriately! All volunteers will be back to the Student Center by 2 pm.

Potential Service Sites: Autism Collaborative Center, Avalon Housing, Inc., City of Ann Arbor Natural Area Preservation, EMU Children's Institute, Friends in Deed, Growing Hope, Habitat for Humanity, Leslie Science and Nature Center, Ozone House, Recycle Ann Arbor's ReUse Center, Ypsilanti Co-Op, Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels


The Color of Drums Poetry Celebration
EMU Poetry Society presents "The War Is Not Over"
Featuring Spoken Word Artist, Jasmine Mans
Pease Auditorium
Doors Open: 6:30 pm
Show Time: 7:00 pm (Free Admission)

Often described as "When poetry and acting collide on stage", The Color of Drums has been a signature MLK performing arts event that features the spoken word. Hosted by the EMU Poetry Society, students will explore today's most pressing social justice issues through compelling performances relating to the theme "The War Is Not Over". This year's feature performer is acclaimed spoken word artist, Jasmine Mans.


Saturday, January 17, 2015


"H2E" Student Talent Showcase and Scholarship Competition
Pease Auditorium
Doors Open: 6:30 pm
Show Time: 7:00 pm (Free Admission)

Join us for a celebration of the performing arts! EMU students will showcase their talents in honor of the Civil Rights Movement and compete for three scholarships! Intermission will feature the music of DJ iPod!

Sunday, January 18, 2015


Community Event
Student Center Auditorium
2:00 - 4:00 pm

Join us for an engaging and informative "Town Hall" meeting on how we can strengthen and improve the partnerships between EMU and the larger Ypsilanti community. After several performances from Dancers of David and a keynote presentation, a panel of elected officials and representatives from various community organizations will discuss our celebration theme and the collaborative relationships that make our community better.


  • Dr. Yvonne Callaway - Professor, Leadership and Counseling, EMU
  • Ken Dobson - Executive Director, Government and Community Relations, EMU
  • Dr. Patrick Pieh - Lecturer, Africology and African-American Studies, EMU
  • Yousef D. Rabhi - Former Chairperson, Washtenaw County Board of Comissioners
  • Andy LaBarre - Executive Vice President and Director of Government Relations, A2Y Regional Chamber
  • Shoshana DeMaria - President, NAACP Ypsilanti/Willow Run Branch
  • Amanda Edmonds - Mayor, City of Ypsilanti, MI
  • Brittany O'Neal - Doctoral Student, African-American and African Studies, Michigan State University


Monday, January 19, 2015 – MLK DAY


MLK Breakfast
Student Center, Room 300
8:00 am

It's time to get inspired! Join us for great food, inspirational music and performances that will surely get you charged for the rest of the day. This year's breakfast will feature spoken word performances and other information pertaining to the Civil Rights Movement. Free and open to the public.


Keynote Address: Dick Gregory
Student Center Auditorium
10:00 am


President's MLK Luncheon
Featuring Keynote Speaker: Dick Gregory
Student Center Ballroom
11:45 am


Academic Programs
Student Center (Various Rooms)
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm 

(Click here for a complete list)


CloseUp Theatre Troupe
Student Center Auditorium
Two Shows:  2:45 pm and 4:00 pm

CloseUp Theatre Troupe's main mission is to explore health and social issues relevant to student life through theatre and follow-up dialogue. Though educational, CloseUp does not preach or moralize social issues. Instead, scenes and performances are open-ended in order to encourage questioning and dialogue among audience members. All of their material is original and collectively created by troupe members and its directors. CloseUp has been a leader in challenging audiences to think, question, laugh and feel since 1997. This year, they will explore issues pertaining to our MLK theme, "Breaking the Illusion: The Movement Continues".


Afterglow Celebration
Student Center, Room 300
5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Join the MLK Planning Committee and the EMU campus community as we celebrate the culmination of the 2015 MLK Day and honor two prominent social justice pioneers as they prepare to retire from Eastern Michigan University:

Dr. Judy Sturgis-Hill (Communication, Media and Theater Arts)
Dr. Kay Woodiel (Health Promotion and Human Performance)



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