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NCCU To Celebrate the Life of Martin Luther King Jr.


North Carolina Central University (NCCU) will host a number of events in January to honor the life and legacy of the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

On Monday, Jan. 15, NCCU’s Office of Community Engagement and Service will partner with the United Way of the Greater Triangle to sponsor the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service at LeRoy T. Walker Physical Education and Sports Complex from 9 a.m. to noon. This marks the fifth year of the partnership between NCCU and United Way of the Greater Triangle.

“It is important to continue to celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. through service,” said Calleen Herbert, director of NCCU’s Office of Community Engagement and Service. “NCCU students will begin the year assisting local organizations that support veterans, literacy, food security, economic opportunity and more.”

The signature event for Durham County, with estimated participation at 815, will provide NCCU students with multiple service opportunities to commemorate King’s memory, assist the community and earn hours of service. Activities will include packaging meals for food pantries; producing no-sew blankets for veterans and military families; developing diaper kits to support children in daycare; creating seating pads for school aged children; and providing aid to those who are returning to the workforce.

“We are proud of our fifth year of partnership with NCCU on this important day. It is incredibly gratifying to see students and community members working together in support of Durham,” said Eric Guckian, president and CEO, United Way of the Greater Triangle. “Since 2014, more than 145,000 meals, 2,100 blankets and 200,000 diapers have been produced and shared with the community through our work together on the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service.”

Due to the event’s tremendous popularity, pre-registration was required. No additional slots are available.  

On Wednesday, Jan. 17, the Department of Student Engagement and Leadership (S.E.A.L.) and Lyceum Committee will host the Rock the Mic Lecture Series featuring keynote speaker Bakari Sellers, politician and CNN commentator. Sellers made history in 2006 when, at just 22 years old, he defeated a 26-year incumbent state representative to become the youngest member of the South Carolina state legislature and the youngest African-American elected official in the nation. The free event will take place in B.N. Duke Auditorium at 7 p.m. and is open to the public. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.

Additional events honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in January include:

  • NCCU’s radio station, WNCU-FM, will host a free screening of documentary “Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities” at 6 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 11, in the H.M. Michaux Jr. School of Education Building Auditorium, 700 Cecil St. Event tickets are no longer available.
  • Eagle Pride Blood Drive, 9 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. , Jan. 16 -18, Alfonso Elder Student Union
  • Performances by students from NCCU’s Departments of Art, Music, and Theatre and Dance will take place at the Martin Luther King Jr. Cultural Celebration at 6 p.m., Friday, Jan. 19, at the Hayti Heritage Center, 804 Fayetteville St., Durham, N.C.
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