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(January 12, 2021 9:36 PM) Community members are invited to join Jackson College in a day of observances for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday, Jan. 18, 2021.

“Jackson College is deeply committed to keeping Dr. King’s dream alive. Dr. King’s dream was a dream of equity, that every person that is willing to work hard will be provided every opportunity to be successful. We have an amazing agenda for a full day’s worth of opportunities to not only celebrate the life of Dr. King, but to also be able to develop our own cultural competencies and to energize our commitment to keeping his dream alive,” said Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Belonging Lee Hampton.

At 10 a.m. that morning, Dr. Tyrone Bledsoe, an educator who as a boy marched alongside Dr. King, will present “From Dreams to Outcomes, The Work of Equity Today.” This is a professional development opportunity for Jackson College employees, but all community members are welcome to listen to the virtual presentation.

Bledsoe brings more than 34 years of postsecondary education experience. He is the founder and current chief executive officer and president of the Student African American Brotherhood (SAAB) Organization — a national organization with over 355 chapters in 41 states that endeavors to instill a “spirit of care” and enhance the experiences of young males of color in our country. Before transitioning to his role with SAAB, Dr. Bledsoe served as Vice President for Student Life and Special Assistant to the President at the University of Toledo. (Full Bio)

LINK: https://zoom.us/j/94273168697

At 1 p.m., a Student Symposium will examine and discuss Systemic Racism. Jackson College’s Student Government Association President Jazmyn Ragland will facilitate a panel discussion with four current students and two alumni. Systemic racism refers to the policies and practices existing throughout a society or organization that result in and support a continued unfair advantage to some people and unfair or harmful treatment of others based on race.

LINK: https://zoom.us/j/92271763094 

At 6 p.m., join in a virtual King Day Celebration, “Hope, Inspire, Believe.” Keynote speaker for the evening will be CMS Energy executive Rejji Hayes, who will offer words of inspiration for the evening, “Dr. King’s Dream for Today.” The 2021 King Medal of Service will be presented posthumously to Benny Poole, who passed away in December. Poole was a lifelong musician who continued to play and entertain with his beloved saxophone into his 90s. He used his talent to build bridges and bring people together, especially for his hometown of Jackson.

Tune in via Zoom to the 2021 event; this is free and all community members are welcome.

LINK: https://zoom.us/j/95116566323

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