This year, Martin Luther King Jr. Day was celebrated for a week at Coastal Carolina University.
There was a “Wall of Change” in each academic building where students wrote inspiring words for others, teach-ins were held to educate participants of how much of an impact MLK made, and a Night of the Arts event was held, followed by a keynote address by Simeon Daise.
Franklin Ellis, interim director of Intercultural and Inclusion Student Services, shared his perspective on the importance of these events: “Three things the demonstration was designed to do,” he said. “Awaken awareness, liberation and be engaging.”
The Night of the Arts was held in the Singleton Building at 5 p.m. This event was created to give participants a feel of the music and visual arts from times like the civil rights movement. During the Night of the Arts, participants enjoyed live music, viewed students’ artwork, and participated in the speaker’s activities.
Talbert Mustrapher and Brianna Byrd, both graphic design majors at CCU, were thrilled about having their work being showcased at the Night of the Arts.
“It feels like a breath of fresh air to have my art showcased in the exhibition,” said Mustrapher.
Following the Night of the Arts, the Student Government Association escorted participants over to Wheelwright Auditorium to prepare for the keynote address. SGA yelled famous chants from the civil rights movement to remind everyone of pivotal moments in history.
Daise was the keynote speaker for the MLK Celebration week. Daise is a native of Beaufort, S.C., and is an actor and writer. He appeared in “Gullah Gullah Island” and other famous BET hit series.
Daise said, “Just like MLK, it’s important to be able to see your dream even when you can’t see it with your physical eyes.”
As MLK Celebration week ended, Daise spoke about dreams, setting goals and loving every part of yourself (even the ugly parts).