Drew's 2018 Celebration of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., 11/14/17.


President’s Message Regarding Drew’s 2018 Celebration of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., 11/14/17

Drew University Community Members,

It is my pleasure to invite you to join the Drew University community to celebrate the ongoing legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Freedom Summer with both learning and civic action events scheduled for January 13–16, 2018. As has become a part of Drew tradition, we are partnering with the neighboring Madison community to bring vibrant thought-leadership, as well as hands-on opportunities for engagement, to express our commitment to social justice and the importance of open dialogue.

Off-Campus Events sponsored by The Beloved Community

Madison will be hosting the following events to which members of the Drew community are cordially invited:

Saturday, January 13, 9:30 a.m.
The First Baptist Church of Madison will be hosting two workshops: “Crucial Conversations for Change” and “What Will Social Justice Look Like in 2018?” These workshops will engage community members in the challenging conversations of working across racial, economic, political, and religious divides to promote an inclusive justice vision.

Sunday, January 14, 2 p.m.
The Holy Family Chapel of the College of St. Elizabeth will be hosting a service reflecting on Dr. King’s works and words. During this service, clergy and lay people will be sharing reflections s from Dr. King’s sermons and writings.

Monday, January 15, 10 a.m.
The First Baptist Church of Madison will be hosting a lecture on The Justice System in America. More details will be provided at a later date.

On-Campus Events sponsored by Drew University

Monday, January 15, 1–4 p.m., Hall of Sciences S4
Drew’s on-campus celebration of Dr. King will begin with a lecture by Dr. Traci C. West, the James W. Pearsall Professor of Christian Ethics and African American Studies. We will celebrate the stories of Civil Rights activists like Fannie Lou Hamer, Septima Clark, and Bayard Rustin whose contributions have been essential to civil rights victories since the 1960s. Dr. West’s lecture will lift up narratives and action stories of Civil Rights activists whose contributions are not often mentioned, but whose life work left an indelible mark on the direction of the Civil Rights Movement. As part of the lecture, we will have an interactive small-group workshop using a community organizing curriculum from the original Freedom Schools. The topic of the interactive workshop is “Envisioning True Freedom & Democracy: Material Power, Political Power, and Soul Power.”

Tuesday, January 16, various times and locations
Students, faculty, and staff are invited to participate in a Day of Service in Dr. King’s memory. The Center for Civic Engagement has planned both on- and off-campus service opportunities throughout the day to benefit the local community. You can visit the Center for Civic Engagement’s website for updates on all of these service projects.

Off campus service projects will be at the following sites:

  • Morris Habitat for Humanity, location TBD. Morning.
  • Market Street Mission Thrift Store, Morristown, NJ. Morning.
  • Community Food Bank of New Jersey, Hillside, NJ. Afternoon.

Due to limited space at these sites and the need to arrange transportation, you must register to participate in these off-campus service opportunities. The registration deadline is Friday, January 12.

On campus service projects will be held in the EC from 3 to 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday afternoon. No registration is required to participate in these events, and refreshments will be served. We are already aware that one of the on-campus service activities will be making UMCOR disaster relief hygiene kits in conjunction with the Drew Disaster Relief Coalition.  The opportunity to donate will be addressed in subsequent communications.

Undergraduate students are scheduled to return to the residence halls on Tuesday, January 16, beginning at noon. For students who would like to return to campus early to participate in these community events, you must complete this registration form.

I hope that you will save these dates and make every effort to participate in this community celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. More details will be shared as these plans develop, and I look forward to seeing you then.

With regards,