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Remembering Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.


Last updated January 10, 2020

By Tina Underwood

For more than 15 years, Furman University has celebrated the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. through a slate of activities that honors the civil rights era icon. Activities include setting aside a day of service on MLK Day and, more recently, hosting a community breakfast featuring a speaker who addresses topics like inclusivity, race relations and diversity.

“We’ve held a community breakfast now for four years,” said Director of Community Relations Chandra Dillard. “This year we are looking forward to hearing from restorative justice champion Fania Davis. On the MLK Day of Service, students, faculty and staff work with Habitat for Humanity, or clear out debris from the YMCA camp, or work with the Greenville Free Medical Clinic and other local organizations. The Day of Service is a meaningful way to step away from classes, bring the Furman community together in acts of kindness and reflect on the legacy of Dr. King.”

In addition to the MLK activities, Furman will hold an inaugural Joseph Vaughn Day on Jan. 29, which commemorates the first African American to enroll at the university. Joseph Vaughn Day is just one of a series of changes at Furman initiated by the Task Force on Slavery and Justice, which is exploring the university’s historical connections to slavery and helping Furman better understand and learn from its past.

Here is the full list of MLK activities:

The 2020 Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Luncheon
Saturday, Jan. 11 at noon
Melvin and Dollie Younts Conference Center
Sponsor: Alpha Phi Alpha Greenville Foundation,
Tickets: $60 per person.
Contact: Allen Cook, or 864-441-9067.

MLK Community Breakfast: Fania E. Davis
Friday, Jan. 17 at 8 a.m.
Co-Founder and Executive Director, Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth
Melvin and Dollie Younts Conference Center
Tickets are $50 per person.
For table or ticket information email or to RSVP, call 864-294-3464

MLK Holiday – A Day of Service
Monday, Jan. 20
8:30 a.m. | Breakfast and check-in
9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | Service
Trone Student Center, Watkins Room
Sponsor: Heller Service Corps, the Center for Inclusive Communities and The Office of Student Involvement and Inclusion
Contact: Nancy Cooper, or 864-294-2900

MLK Interfaith Celebration
Monday, Jan. 20 at 7 p.m.
Rev. Dr. Chanequa Walker-Barnes, Proclaimer
Daniel Memorial Chapel
Sponsor: The Office of Spiritual Life
Contact: Susan Bennett, or 864-294-2133

“Antiracist While White?” a Cultural Life Program
Tuesday, Jan. 21, 6:30 p.m.
Rev. Dr. Chanequa Walker-Barnes, Proclaimer
Daniel Memorial Chapel, Bryan Garden Room
Sponsor: The Office of Spiritual Life and Center for Inclusive Communities
Contact: Susan Bennett, or 864-294-2133

Inaugural Joseph Vaughn Day
Wednesday, Jan. 29
12:15 p.m. Gathering of the Community, Duke Library
12:20 p.m. Walk to Daniel Chapel
12:30 p.m. Commemorative Program, Daniel Chapel

MLK Youth Program and Rudolph Gordon College Fair
Saturday, Feb. 1, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Trone Student Center, Furman University
Sponsor: The Alpha Phi Alpha Greenville Foundation
Contact: Bobby Clark, or 864-441-9067

Joseph Vaughn Oratorical Contest
Saturday, Feb. 15, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Tabernacle Baptist Church
Sponsor: Alpha Phi Alpha Greenville Foundation,
Contact: Mike Chatman, or 864-906-7078

Events are made possible through a partnership between Furman University and Alpha Phi Alpha Greenville Foundation. All events are free with the exception of the MLK Scholarship Luncheon and MLK Community Breakfast. For table or ticket information, contact Chandra Dillard at, and 864-294-2503.

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