IU Northwest celebrates Dr. MLK Jr. and Black History Month

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Events explore legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., first African American female pilot, and a hundred-year quest to honor Black history and culture

Indiana University Northwest’s Office of Diversity, Equity, and Multicultural Affairs (ODEMA) invites the campus community and general public to celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and Black History Month with three events designed to heighten awareness of the contributions of African Americans throughout history.

Jan. 24: “MLK and the Strength of Shared Dreams,”

2:30 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24, Bruce W. Bergland Auditorium, Savannah Center

Emmy award-winning actor and diversity trainer Ron Jones is the co-creator of Dialogues on Diversity, a social justice and diversity theater company that uses theatrical models to express messages of difference, inclusion and social justice.

Through live character portrayal, and video, Jones will deliver a performance lecture that depicts how Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “Poor Peoples Campaign” was a turning point in inter-sectional advocacy demonstrating how a broad cross-section of cultural groups came together to fight against poverty.

Using video excerpts during a one-man show, Jones will offer a multi-dimensional performance to illustrate lessons learned during a pivotal moment of America’s civil rights journey.

Feb. 5: “Life and Times Bessie Coleman: The First African American Female Pilot”

2:30 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 5, Bruce W. Bergland Auditorium, Savannah Center

Just as other tales of pilots returning from World War I inspired us all, so did Bessie Coleman’s pioneering journey from the cotton fields of Texas to the skies above Paris. The first African American female pilot, Coleman became an inspiration to generations of pilots who followed her. Her tale is performed in an interactive one-woman show by her great-niece, Gigi Coleman.

Feb. 12: “Long Road to Hard Truth: The 100-Year Mission to Create the National Museum of African American History and Culture”

2:30 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 12, Bruce W. Bergland Auditorium, Savannah Center

An Indiana native and Harvard University graduate, Judge Robert Wilkins is a U.S. Circuit Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. As the author of “Long Road to Hard Truth, the 100-Year Mission to Create the National Museum of African American History and Culture,” Wilkins will discuss how the museum came to be, evolving from the early history of advocates clamoring for a monument to recognize Black soldiers in the Civil War, to the September 2016 opening of the NMAAHC, a process that took 100 years.

For more information on these events, contact the Office of Diversity, Equity and Multicultural Affairs at 219-980-6596 or kevsbrya@iun.edu.

About Indiana University Northwest

One of eight campuses of Indiana University, IU Northwest is located in metropolitan Northwest Indiana, approximately 30 miles southeast of Chicago and 10 miles from the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. The campus has a diverse student population of approximately 4,000 degree-seeking students and 1,500 dual-credit students. The campus offers Associate, Baccalaureate and Master’s degrees in a variety of undergraduate, graduate and pre-professional degree options available from the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Health and Human Services, the School of Business and Economics, the School of the Arts and the School of Education. The campus is also host to IU School of Medicine-Northwest-Gary, which actively involves students in research and local healthcare needs through its four-year medical doctorate program. IU Northwest emphasizes high-quality teaching, faculty and student research and engagement on campus and in the community. As a student-centered campus, IU Northwest is committed to academic excellence characterized by a love of ideas and achievement in learning, discovery, creativity and engagement. Indiana University Northwest is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer committed to achieving excellence through diversity. The University actively encourages applications from women, minorities, veterans, persons with disabilities, and members of other underrepresented groups.


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