Published: Jan. 12, 2015

MSU to celebrate MLK Jr. Day, one year of Project 60/50

Contact(s): Jennifer Trenkamp Communication Arts And Sciences office: 517-432-5255, Audrey Bentley Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives office: (517) 432-8384

Michigan State University will mark its 2015 Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration by commemorating the one-year anniversary of a major campus and community initiative – Project 60/50.

Launched during the 2014 celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Project 60/50 used the 60th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education and the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to engage the MSU campus and greater community in a broad range of civil and human rights conversations.

The project, coordinated through MSU’s Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives, featured more than 200 events, thousands of participants and more than 22 corporate sponsors and community partners. Events and initiatives impacted by Project 60/50 included The Race Card Project, the 2014 One Book, One Community program and the "60/50 Theatre Project," among others.

“Project 60/50 exceeded our expectations,” MSU President Lou Anna K. Simon said. "It was designed to create spaces where important conversations could take place — civil discourse focused on civil rights and social justice — even as some tragic events were dividing many Americans once again."

This year’s celebration theme is "A Tribute to Project 60/50: Crossing Borders, Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges.”

Following are some of the Project 60/50 and Martin Luther King Jr. Day commemorative events taking place at MSU.

Saturday, Jan. 17

  • Project 60/50 Gala
    6 p.m., Huntington Club, Spartan Stadium, by invitation only
  • “Speaking Like King” slam poetry open mic night
    9 p.m., International Center. Doors open at 8:30 p.m.

Sunday, Jan. 18

  •  “Jazz: Spirituals, Prayer and Protest” concert with special guests Take 6
    5 p.m., 8 p.m., Fairchild Theatre, MSU Auditorium
    Tickets required.
    Sponsored by the MSU College of Music and MSU Jazz Studies

Monday, Jan. 19

  • “Acting Like King” Martin Luther King Jr. Student Leadership Celebration Conference
    9 a.m. to 3 p.m., MSU Union
    Open to all college and high school students. Free, but must register online
  • On-site service learning projects
    9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Room 50, MSU Union
    Service projects will take place honoring U.S. military active duty and veterans who have served our country.
    Sponsored by the Center for Service Learning and Civic Engagement, Into the Streets student organization and others
  • Community resource fair
    9 to 11 a.m., second floor, MSU Union
    The fair will feature MSU and off-campus departments, organizations, community agencies and nonprofits.
  • “The Pursuit of Happyness”
    11 a.m., Ballroom, MSU Union
    Partial screening of film and community discussion.
    Sponsored by MSU Libraries, MSU Residence Education and Housing Services
  • Commemorative March for Justice
    3 p.m., Ballroom, MSU Union
    Sponsored by Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.. Mosaic Multicultural Unity Center and University Activities Board
  • MSU Museum exhibits and special tour
    3:45 p.m., MSU Museum
    “Seeing China: Photographic Views & Viewpoints” and “Growing Up Digital in Michigan and Morocco”
    Sponsored by the MSU Museum

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is Jan. 19. Classes are canceled, but the university remains open.

All Martin Luther King Jr. Day commemorative events are free and open to the public, unless otherwise noted. For a complete list of 2015 events, including those planned by colleges and departments, go here.

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