Purdue University Northwest (PNW) invites the community to join in a celebration of diversity, inclusion and Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy in the university’s annual program hosted Jan. 17, 2022.

The free, virtual event, which takes place from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m., can be viewed at PNW’s YouTube channel during or after this time.

The program’s theme is “Social Justice Begins with Me,” which focuses on inward reflection for a commitment to bettering humanity, in turn extending that mission to the larger community.

“The event serves as an opportunity to educate and empower humanity to move forward with Dr. Martin Luther King’s unfinished work,” said Laura Odom, associate director of PNW’s Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. “This annual celebration is an opportunity to remember, experience and honor the life and legacy of Dr. King.”

“It’s a personal privilege to publicly commit to ‘keeping the dream alive,’” said Sondra Craig, MLK committee co-chair. “I eagerly look forward to a new yearly specific call to action to implement in my daily life an extension of the life and legacy of MLK.”

Program lineup

  • Nicky Ali Jackson, PNW associate professor of Criminal Justice, is the keynote speaker. Jackson’s teaching and research focuses on incarceration, wrongful convictions, domestic violence, and sexual assault. Jackson founded the Willie T. Donald Exoneration Advisory Coalition, which connects exonerees with resources and advocates for criminal justice reform in Indiana. Jackson was recognized in August with the Sagamore of the Wabash award for her work.
  • Dion Campbell, chief of police for the Michigan City Police Department (MCPD), will emcee the celebration. Chief Campbell previously emceed in 2017. He has served with MCPD for 22 years, having worked in the patrol division, detective bureau, and as a school resource officer for Michigan City High School before being appointed chief.
  • PNW Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Kenneth C. Holford will deliver opening remarks. Vocalist Jenne Carey will provide the musical interlude.

More information can be found at pnw.edu/mlk-celebration.