The University of Arkansas at Little Rock acknowledged the importance of celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and carrying on his legacy of serving the community.
The Multicultural Center held the event on Jan. 17, the seventh annual National Day of Racial Healing, a day in which individuals, organizations, and communities come together to create a more equitable world.
“We celebrate Dr. King’s legacy because it goes beyond his humanity,” said Lauren Wilson, associate director of the Multicultural Center. “It’s important for us to stop and think about how we can do things for others and support others. In this spirit, we have partnered with the Trojan Food Pantry to collect donations and to encourage the campus community to sign up to volunteer with the food pantry.”
In addition to volunteering, attendees were invited to write down how they plan to help others in the community. Fixed at the head of the board is a quote by Dr. King: “Life’s most persistent and urgent questions is, ‘What you are doing for others?’”
Some of the ideas written down include praying, greeting people with a smile on your face, motivating others, giving compliments, and being more understanding.
One student wrote they would be “there when others need it. Always being a listening shoulder to cry on because everyone needs that in their life.”
The board will stay on display in the Multicultural Center for several weeks so people may reflect on ideas for service.
“The MLK Day of Service is always a day on and not a day off, whether you are in the community or sharing the history of Dr. King and what his vision was to others,” said Dr. Kara Brown, assistant vice chancellor for student affairs.
Jalynn Robinson, a junior mathematics major from Dallas, spent MLK Jr. Day attending the parade in Dallas.
“Celebrating MLK Jr. Day is important because it keeps the history alive through the centuries and generations to let everyone know what happened back then,” Robinson said.
Donnecia Brown, a senior sociology major, agreed that it’s important to remember Dr. King so we don’t repeat the mistakes of the past.
“I think it’s important because knowing how the world used to be with segregation and all that, I feel like MLK paved the way for us to come together as people no matter our skin color,” Brown said. “I think it’s good to celebrate so we can remember where we came from and where we are going.”