2013 MLK Day of Service
MLK Week at Occidental College
For the past two years, the Office of Community Engagement has hosted MLK Week; it is a time when the Oxy community reflects on the ideals and values of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The week-long series of events is a fitting way to pay tribute and celebrate the legacy of Dr. King, the most revered leader in the Civil Rights Movement and a figure who visited and spoke at Oxy in April 1962.
This year’s events were launched with a talk by internationally acclaimed filmmaker Byron Hurt, who spoke about how Dr.King was an inspiration to him and his work. Mr. Hurt’s latest film, Soul Food Junkies, was recently screen on PBS and has been garnering film festival awards in the past several months.
The next event during MLK Week was the MLK Day of Service. Now in it’s fourth year, over 200 students and staff participated in the Day of Service on Saturday, January 26, 2013. Oxy community members collaborated with City Year as well as 17 non-profit organizations in Los Angeles to engage in clean up, park restoration and phone banking projects. President Joanthan Veitch, as well as Lidia Manzanares, Chief Service Office for the City of Los Angeles, were on hand to greet volunteers and offer words of encouragement before they went off to their sites. The day concluded with a closing ceremony. Graced by the Occidental College Glee Club and an inspiring speech by junior Alexandra LaRosa, the day was full of good will and partnership.
The Office of Community Engagement also partnered with the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life to sponsor the discussion “Where Spirituality Meets Social Justice: Lessons From MLK.” Alexandra LaRosa and Rebecca Cooper led and thoughtful presentation and discussion about Dr. King’s values and how his work was grounded in his Spirituality.
MLK Week concluded with a trip to the Food Bank where sophomore Eleni Lit led a group of students to Los Angeles Food Bank to put together food packages for underserved community members. MLK Week continues to be a way that the Oxy community can affirm it’s commitment to community and service.
The MLK Day of Service was partially funded by a Oregan Campus Compact mini-grant.