At Hastings College, the Black Student Alliance (BSA) honored Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by holding a walk around the campus on Jan. 20. The walk was led and planned by Kiera Anderson, Ikeah Cuff, Jordyn Fanfair, Chris Adams, Travis Agagah, Jarius Stuart and Steven Dunham. Audio of King’s 1963 “I Have A Dream” speech was played to remind those joining the walk of its purpose.
Jan. 20 marked the 34th year that Martin Luther King, Jr. Day has been observed as a holiday in the United States. King, who would have turned 91 years old on Jan. 15 if he were not assassinated, is acknowledged in his continuing legacy by the holiday officially known as the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
“We wanted to show support for what he was fighting for and continue to fight for today. We wanted to raise awareness and take action as to make the world a better place for everyone, now and for generations to come. We wanted to show that we walk together, unified and proudly as one, as we believe the world should be,” said Travis Agagah, vice president of the BSA.
For the BSA, the walk is not only a way to honor King’s legacy but also a show of support for minority students on campus.
“The BSA planned the MLK walk to start a foundation where African-American students, on or off campus, feel as though someone cares about minority holidays,” said Anderson, president of the BSA.
While other events have been held on MLK day in the last five years, the walk had been planned in previous years and was ultimately canceled because of bad weather. This year, walkers donned coats and made the journey in spite of elemental adversity. The walk started from the front entrance of the Hazelrigg Student Union and made a full lap around the campus, first passing by Bronc Hall and forging ahead in the cold weather to the Perkins Library, then returning to the HSU by walking past the Chapel and through the flag display.
“It was brought to my knowledge that in past years, specifically the past seven years, the MLK walk had been canceled due to cold weather. BSA will no longer allow weather, unless extreme, to be an excuse. The MLK walk will be an official annual event every year,” Anderson said.
Several other events are planned during Black History Month, such as movie nights, a dodgeball tournament, a block party dance and Boograms on Valentine’s Day.
“BSA is open to all and encourages others on campus to come show support and participate in events. We want to build a strong diverse community where everyone feels safe enough to be themselves and learn from one another,” Agagah said.