The University of South Florida’s annual celebration of the life and legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. will honor his vision with several activities, including community service and a commemorative brunch.
USF’s Stampede of Service event kicked off the MLK celebration as students started participating in monthlong community service projects at various sites across the Tampa Bay region. Dozens of volunteers are set to lend a hand at eight different project locations in the coming weeks. On Friday, Jan. 14, USF students sorted food items at the Feeding Tampa Bay warehouse and served hot meals at Trinity Café, a Feeding Tampa Bay restaurant for those in need.
In addition, student volunteers from the USF Sarasota-Manatee campus assembled personal hygiene kits to provide to homeless shelters in the Manasota area. The items, which were gathered from a campus donation drive, filled approximately 70 bags.
On Monday, Jan. 17, members of the USF community participated in MLK parades in St. Petersburg and Tampa.
The theme of this year’s USF MLK Commemorative Brunch, scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 21, in the Marshall Student Center Ballroom on the Tampa campus, is “Liberation & Legacy.” The event features keynote speaker Ruthmae Sears, associate professor of mathematics in the College of Education and lead researcher behind a recent plan aimed at identifying and addressing structural racism in St. Petersburg. The brunch, which is free and open to the public with a reservation, will also feature a student dance and song performance.
A full list of activities can be found on the MLK Commemorative Week webpage.
The USF Tampa campus is home to the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Plaza, featuring a bust of King and portions of his famous “I Have a Dream” speech inscribed in granite, giving students, faculty and staff a place to reflect on his legacy throughout the year.