Macomb Community College students, staff and faculty pledge a day of service in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.
– Wednesday, January 4, 2017 12:00AM
"Everyone can be great, because everyone can serve." Martin Luther King, Jr.
An estimated 500 Macomb Community College students, staff and faculty members will commemorate the 2017 Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday with two days dedicated to making their community a better place. On the holiday, Monday, Jan. 16, and the preceding Saturday, Jan. 14, , these committed volunteers will be deployed to approximately 30 sites throughout Metro Detroit and will participate in activities ranging from preparing and serving lunch in area soup kitchens to participating in activities with local seniors and veterans.
“Giving our students, staff and faculty the opportunity to honor Dr. King’s legacy of selfless community service is one of the highlights of our year,” said Macomb Community College President James Jacobs. “I am proud of the Macomb Community College community’s commitment to volunteering in the community and dedicating their time to go out and make a difference.”
Macomb’s MLK Day of Service on Jan. 16 will begin with a brief opening ceremony at 8:00 a.m. in the John Lewis Student Center (K Building) on Macomb’s South Campus in Warren. Maria Ramos, professor of foreign language at Macomb, will host the ceremony, with opening remarks by Jacobs.
A highlight of the ceremony will be a reading from the winning essay of the fourth annual Macomb-sponsored MLK essay contest. Sarah Loutzenhiser, 31, of Macomb Township, penned the first-place essay, entitled “America in our children’s eyes,” which reaffirms Dr. King’s message and its impact on the coming generation. Loutzenhiser, a member of Phi Theta Kappa, is a mother of three and is currently pursuing an associate degree in general studies, with plans to apply to the nursing program next semester. Loutzenhiser commented that she is learning more about racial equality and black history from her kids than she was ever taught in school. She will receive a $500 cash prize for her winning entry.
“It’s our job as members of the community, regardless of our role or status, to reflect what we want to see in the world, especially for our children. We can do this by demonstrating as Mr. King has done by showing peace in place of hate, forgiveness to those who do not yet understand, courage in the place of fear, confidence in what we believe, faith in what we cannot yet see and determination in what we want to be,” Loutzenhiser wrote.
Mahmuda Mouri, 19, of Warren, was the runner up winner with her essay entitled “Need to come forward.” Mouri, a business management student at the college, notes that she was motivated to write the essay by the racism she sees around her. The premise of her essay is her belief that we need a new Martin Luther King, Jr. for modern times. Mouri will receive a $100 gift certificate to the campus bookstore.
The Macomb Community College community will hit the road immediately following the opening ceremonies, following the volunteers that got a jump on things the preceding Saturday.
Volunteers will spend their time at a variety of local organizations including the Detroit Rescue Mission, Forgotten Harvest, Gleaners Food Bank, Harbor Chase Senior Living, Veterans Administration, Capuchin Soup Kitchen and others. Volunteers will also be stationed at Macomb’s South Campus and participating in activities such as making hats and scarves for the homeless, creating memory books for Alzheimer patients and writing letters to active duty military. Macomb’s new Black Student Union will be conducting its first winter clothing drive.
About Macomb Community College Macomb Community College (www.macomb.edu) is one of the nation’s leading community colleges, providing learning experiences to nearly 44,000 students annually. Macomb nationally ranks in the top two percent in the number of associate degrees awarded by community colleges and is the largest grantor of associate degrees in Michigan. The college’s comprehensive educational programming includes pre-collegiate experiences, university transfer and career preparation programs, bachelor degree completion and graduate degree programs, workforce training, professional education and certification, and continuing education and enrichment opportunities.
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