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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

banner picture of people whom were important to black history with Dr. M.L. King in the middle


MLK Jr. Short Biography

In 1980, a graduate student led a successful campaign to begin celebrating the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at MSU.

In 1986 Martin Luther King Jr. Day was established as a U.S. federal holiday and in 1998, Michigan State University's administration officially canceled the regular class schedule on the national holiday.

Since that time, each year on the third Monday in January, faculty, students, staff and surrounding communities join in the celebration of Dr. King to reflect on his message of civil rights and social justice for all through nonviolent means.


2015 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemorative Celebration


"A Tribute to Project 60/50:  Crossing Borders, Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges"

In January 2015 Michigan State University will officially conclude "PROJECT 60/50 during the commemorative celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Project 60/50 was created to recognize two anniversaries involving major legislation that played a significant role in changing the daily lives of everyone in the United States. On May 17, 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court declared that state laws establishing separate public schools unconstitutional in Brown v. Board of Education, and on July 2, 1964 President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the Civil Rights Act, which became the nation’s benchmark civil rights legislation that continues to resonate in America.  These two prominent landmark decisions that took place 60 and 50 years ago remain vital to us today and like many other colleges and universities around the nation, MSU is proud of the way the community is coming together to actively engage in a variety of conversations that lead to our continued learning and increased respect.  

MSU will close the year-long initiative by again demonstrating its commitment to the principles of diversity and inclusion through active and community-wide engagement.  The 2015 program calendar will include a student leadership conference; jazz concerts that honor and acknowledge the contributions made by Dr. King and others like him to the civil rights movement; a host of college-wide activities; special events at the MSU Museum and Libraries; and the conclusion of "What's Your 110?"(60+50) sponsored by the Center for Service Learning and Civic Engagement as a student community volunteer initiative.  MSU administrators will continue their long tradition of supporting the Greater Lansing MLK Commission by attending its city-wide luncheon and members of the Lansing community along with the keynote speaker for the luncheon will be invited to join MSU students, faculty, staff and administrators in a commemorative march modeled in the tradition of the freedom marches of the 1960s.  Last but not least, a special gala will take place to celebrate the end of Project 60/50 and all the great work performed by everyone involved and support given by so many local businesses and university units.  Details about each of these events will appear in the celebration calendar.

If you have questions about this program, please contact the Office for Inclusion at 517-353-3922, Monday through Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.

The MSU community is invited to participate in the annual commemoration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. January 2015 marks the end of Project 60/50 which was launched during the celebraton of Dr. King in 2014.  Project 60/50 is a pioneer initiative whose best feature is its ability to bring a diverse community of individuals together to engage in a multitude of conversations covering broad topics about civil and human rights.  Created to mark the anniversaries of Brown v. Board of Education and the 1964 Civil Rights Act, people from different cultural backgrounds are demonstrating that they want to be included and want to add their voices to the conversations about topices that are important to them. Boundaries and barriers that divide us can be overcome as we gradually build trust and respect among us.  It's not about always agreeing, but always being willing to talk and learn from each other.  The 2015 program promises to be informative, interesting, unique and celebratory--we welcome everyone to find something that interests them and attend.  All events are accessible, inclusive and free, unless stated otherwise.