Events offer HOPE and support during MLK week

January 11, 2016 - 2:36pm

The message for this year’s Martin Luther King Jr. week is simple — HOPE.

“We wanted to come up with a theme that was good for minorities on campus, so we asked students what they wanted to see,” UO student and multicultural education and support intern Ariana Donaville said. “They wanted to see hope, or something that means there’ll be better days ahead, so we came up with HOPE, which is an acronym for Hoping for the Opportunity to Pursue Equality.”

HOPE will serve as the backbone for events happening the week of Martin Luther King Jr. Day at the UO. Donaville helped develop the theme and events for the commemoration week.

Donaville was excited about helping with the events because she’s attended the UO's Martin Luther King Jr. week the last two years. From the start, Donaville wanted student input, so she asked her friends and students what they would want on campus during the week.

That grew into almost a week of events honoring the slain civil rights leader and his legacy. For the full schedule, click here.

The multicultural education program in the Office of the Dean of Students is boosting student engagement during the memorial week by collaborating with student groups. From Jan. 20 through 22 at 7 p.m. in Room 145 Straub Hall, The UO Black Student Union, Black Male Alliance and Black Women of Achievement will be cohosting a three-part movie series.

On Monday, Jan. 18 — Martin Luther King Jr. Day — the Eugene and Springfield chapters of the NAACP will be hosting a march along Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. The Eugene community and students can meet at 9 a.m. at the PK Park north gate, where the march will begin. Buses will take participants back to PK Park after the march.

Also on Monday, the UO Holden Center for Leadership and Community Engagement will direct more than 10 community service projects, starting at 8:15 a.m. and 1 p.m. Transportation, snacks and a T-shirt will be provided to registered volunteers.

"I believe all the MLK week of events are important for students to attend, and I hope they can experience as many as they can," Director of Multicultural Education Alicia Sheikh-Arvizu said. "We're also very honored to host April Ryan for the keynote address."

Ryan is the only black female White House correspondent covering urban issues. Ryan’s keynote address is at 7 p.m. Jan. 19 in Room 150 Columbia Hall, and afterward Ryan will sign copies of her newest book, “The Presidency in Black and White.”

All the scheduled events at the UO during MLK week will try to give students HOPE.

“It’s going to be an important week, and I want students to see that there’s support for them on campus,” Donaville said. “In light of events in the news, especially from last term, I want all minorities and students in general to feel like they have a support system to go to.”

By Craig Garcia, Public Affairs Communications intern