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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

25th Annual Celebration of URI Martin Luther King, Jr. Week, Feb. 4-9

Media Contact: Jhodi Redlich, 401-874-4500

"Living Dr. King's Legacy: Incorporating Peace in Our Homes, Our Schools, and Abroad"

The objectives of Dr. Martin Luther King Week are to remember the life and legacy of Dr. King, to celebrate and commemorate the contributions of the global civil and human rights movements to contemporary concepts of democracy and citizenship, and to act with an understanding of the relevance and importance of nonviolence, community service learning, and civic engagement for today’s society.

For more information go to www.uri.edu/mcc. All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.

To register for any of these events, please email Dr. Mailee Kue. URI Faculty are asked to involve their classes by integrating these enriching events into their courses and assignments.

Monday, February 4
12 PM-1 PM, Martin Luther King, Jr.: Civil Rights Leader (Video & Discussion), Multicultural Center, Computer Classroom.
Facilitated by Kabir Lambo, Undergraduate Student, Sociology and Africana Studies. Join us for this discussion on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and learn more about his life and leadership. Adapted from the book Martin Luther King Jr., civil rights leader, by Robert Jakoubek, this video examines the life of the Baptist minister and civil rights leader who helped American blacks win many battles for equal rights. Co-sponsored by Uhuru SaSa and the Multicultural Center.

5 -6 PM, Leadership & You: How to Make the Most of Your Inner Dr. King!
Multicultural Center, Hardge Forum
Facilitated by Sarah Miller, Coordinator, Feinstein Center for Service Learning and Robert Vincent, Coordinator, Center for Student Leadership Development. This interactive and discussion based workshop will allow students to examine their own personal leadership strengths and values and tap into their inner Dr. King potential. We all have the ability to be amazing leaders in our community and this workshop will help participants reflect on this by focusing on Martin Luther King Jr.’s leadership through the framework of the Social Change Model of Leadership. Students will ultimately be able to define MLK leadership for themselves and apply new leadership practices to their URI career and beyond! Co-Sponsored by the Feinstein Center for Service Learning and Center for Student Leadership Development

7 PM, Education Under Fire: Iranian Rights to Higher Education (Documentary & Conversation), Multicultural Center, Hardge Forum
This 30-minute documentary examines the campaign of the Iranian government over 30 years to prevent its largest religious minority – the Baha’is – from engaging in higher education, and the nonviolent response to systematic persecution, including denial of entry into certain professions, arrests, torture, and execution. In 1987, the Baha’i Institute of Higher Education (BIHE) was founded as an alternative underground institution. Staffed by volunteer instructors, BIHE has graduated over 2000 students, many of whom have continued their studies at colleges and universities in the United States. In May 2011, government forces launched a coordinated attack on the BIHE, raiding homes, confiscating computers and books, and detaining professors and administrators without due process. The documentary is a testimony to the importance of human rights, such as the inalienable right to education and freedom of religion; as well as the relevance of nonviolence in the 21st century. The video is followed by discussion focusing on actions we can take as a university community. Visit http://educationunderfire.com/ for more information and a sneak preview of the video. Co-sponsored by the Multicultural Center, the URI Center for Nonviolence and Peace Studies, the South Kingstown Baha’i Community, and the URI Chaplains Association.

Tuesday, February 5
12 PM- 1 PM, A Taste of Meditation, Multicultural Center, Hardge Forum. Facilitated by Thupten Tendhar, University Affiliate, Center for Nonviolence and Peace Studies. Explore fundamental Buddhist practices and meditation techniques for achieving states of well-being! Allow Buddhist wisdom traditions to offer you pathways to peace in a conflicted world! Bring your lunch and join us for the hour of meditation. Light refreshments will be provided. Co-sponsored by the Multicultural Center, the Center for Nonviolence and Peace Studies, and the Office of the Chaplains.

7 PM, "Post-Racial America in the Age of Obama" by Professor Charles Ogletree
Memorial Union, Ballroom

Charles J. Ogletree, Jr., a nationally recognized Harvard law professor and long-time mentor to President Obama, will be the featured speaker inaugurating URI’s newly endowed “Marlen Bodden Annual Lecture in Africana Studies.” The lecture series brings influential people to the URI campus to highlight and celebrate the contributions of prominent people throughout the African Diaspora. In recognition of Black History Month, Ogletree, one of the country’s leading scholars on civil rights, will talk about the historic significance of Obama’s election and whether the country has made any progress to end racial discrimination. The talk will be followed by a signing of his latest book, "The Presumption of Guilt: The Arrest of Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Race, Class and Crime in America," which documents Gates’ mistaken arrest for attempting to break into his own home in Cambridge, Mass. A senior advisor to Obama and frequent commentator in the national print and electronic media, Ogletree has written and spoken eloquently for decades about the issues of race, class, and crime in America. He is the Jesse Climenko Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, and the founder and executive director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at the law school. He is the author of numerous articles, editorials, and books on race and criminal justice and has received many honors, including being named one of the 100 most influential lawyers in America by the National Law Journal and one of the 100 most influential black Americans by Ebony magazine. Ogletree obtained his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in political science from Stanford University, before heading to Harvard Law School, from which he graduated in 1978. He became a professor at Harvard Law School in 1985. Co-sponsored by Africana Studies, the College of Arts & Sciences, and the URI Foundation.

Wednesday, February 6
11:45 AM-1 PM, Unity Luncheon with Keynote Address by Dennis Langley, President and CEO, RI Urban League, Memorial Union, Ballroom
Emceed by Milan Sands and Melissa Fajardo, Graduate Students, College Student Personnel. The Unity Luncheon is a communal sharing of food, song, and reflection in celebration of the legacy of ideas espoused by Dr. King, and the application of the legacy at the University of Rhode Island. The URI Office of the Chaplains will present the Tenth Annual Peacemaker Award honoring a student, student organization, or member of the URI academic community whose goals and activities express a commitment to the pursuit of peace and nonviolence. The event will be concluded with a selection from the Civil Rights songbook. To attend the luncheon, RSVP to maileekue@uri.edu. Seating is limited. Co-sponsored by the Multicultural Center, the Office of the Chaplains, and the Center for Nonviolence and Peace Studies

5 PM-6:30 PM, Hunger Banquet, Multicultural Center, Hardge Forum
Facilitated by Sarah Miller, Feinstein Center for Service Learning. Students will participate in a unique and memorable event, an Oxfam Hunger Banquet, which allows organizers and participants alike to experience firsthand how our decisions affect others in the world. This project is awareness based and will include local and global perspectives. The event will include a panel of professionals associated with hunger and homelessness and an interactive meal program led by student leaders from various programs on campus. After a Hunger Banquet event, few participants leave with full stomachs, but all possess a greater understanding of the problems of hunger and poverty and will hopefully be motivated to become engaged. Sponsored by Feinstein Center for Service Learning

Thursday, February 7, 2013
5 - 6 PM, Using Comedy to Create Cross Cultural Dialogue
Multicultural Center, Hardge Forum (Rm. 101)
Jewish-American comic Scott Blakeman and Palestinian-American comic Dean Obeidallah will discuss how they use comedy to create dialogue and foster understanding between people of different backgrounds and ethnicities. Co-sponsored by Hillel

7:30 - 9 PM, Stand Up for Peace Comedy Show
Memorial Union, Ballroom
Stand Up for Peace brings Jews, Arabs, Muslims and people from all backgrounds together to laugh, and encourages a dialogue in support of a peaceful, political resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Blakeman and Obeidallah begin the show together, perform their own acts separately, and then reunite at the end for an entertaining and candid question and answer session. Scott Blakeman and Dean Obeidallah have received critical acclaim and drawn standing room only crowds at colleges, theaters, Community Centers and comedy clubs. They have performed at numerous colleges including Yale, Harvard, Stanford and UCLA, and have been featured on MSNBC, CNN, Fox News, National Public Radio, BBC Radio, and many other television, radio and web programs. Co-sponsored by Hillel

Friday, February 8, 2013
10:30AM - 2:30PM, Volunteer Fair, Memorial Union, Ballroom.
Dozens of non-profit agencies and service groups will be recruiting volunteers. All students, faculty and staff are welcome and encouraged to take action to make a difference in our community by stopping by the Spring Volunteer Fair to become engaged and informed! The event is free of charge and is organized by the Feinstein Civic Engagement Program. Visit www.uri.edu/volunteer for more information. Sponsored by Feinstein Center for Service Learning

5:30 - 7:30 PM, Avi Schaefer Muslim/Jewish Shabbat Dinner
Norman M. Fain Hillel Center, 6 Fraternity Circle
All are invited to participate in a discussion about Jewish and Muslim traditions followed by a dinner prepared by Jewish and Muslim students celebrating their culture and heritage. The dinner is free for students and $15 for non-students. Reservations required. Call 401-874-2740. This dinner is partially funded by the Avi Schaefer Fund, in memory of Brown University student Avi Schaefer who committed his life to the pursuit of peace. Co-sponsored by Hillel and Muslim Student Association

Saturday, February 9, 2013
9 AM-2 PM, Martin Luther King Day of Service
Dr. King once said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, “What are you doing for others?” The 25th anniversary of the Martin Luther King federal holiday provides people of all cultures and identities an opportunity to honor Dr. King’s life through service, and to move us closer toward the vision of the “beloved community.” On this Day of Service you will have the opportunity to serve with your fellow classmates and community members in projects both on and off campus! Co-sponsored by School of Education, Kappa Delta Pi, and URI Fraternities and Sororities Multicultural Center, Hardge Forum

The schedule of events for the Day of Service is as follows:

9 am – Breakfast and Mentor Orientation
10 am - Welcome
10:15am – Icebreaker
10:30pm – “Our Friend Martin” Video and Discussions
12 pm – Lunch
12:30pm – Arts and Craft
1 pm – The Life of Dr. King
1:30pm – Depart MCC
Acknowledgements The University of Rhode Island Multicultural Center, Office of the Chaplains, Africana Studies, College of Arts & Sciences, Hillel, Feinstein Center for Service Learning, Center for Nonviolence and Peace Studies, Office of Community, Diversity, and Equity, Office of Student Life, School of Education, Uhuru SaSa, the URI Foundation, URI Fraternities and Sororities, Kappa Delta Pi, Brothers On A New Direction (BOND), Powerful Independent Notoriously Knowledgeable (P.I.N.K.) Women, Student Alliance for the Welfare of Africa (SAWA), Student Nonviolent Involvement Committee (SNIC), and Department of Psychology, join forces to honor the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Since 1986, the university community has observed the anniversary of the national MLK holiday through lectures, discussions, meditations, videos, workshops, music and dance performances, art exhibits, and other activities. While the official holiday is commemorated on the third Monday of January, the University of Rhode Island celebration customarily takes place during the second week of the University semester to encourage maximum participation.