Tonight was a reminder what a great commitment UVM has to exploring and educating ourselves about issues of diversity. I sat in historic Ira Allen Chapel with a full house of students, faculty, staff and community members listening to actors Danny Glover and Felix Justice who performed “An Evening with Martin and Langston.” Each actor helped the audience experience the words and shared their commentary on the impact that these two legends had that shaped where we are today. Questions from the audience included asking Mr. Glover’s and Mr. Justice’s views on the state of voting rights for marginalized citizens and and what they think Martin Luther King Jr. would say about the Occupy movement in the U.S. today. The program ended with the audience joining the UVM Concert Choir in a rendition of We Shall Overcome – it was a great community moment. This event was part of a week-long MLK celebration, an annual event on UVM’s campus.
UVM is an exceptional place because we provide our students with a place to discuss, debate and wrestle with complex issues – in the classroom, in the clubs and organizations in which they are involved, and in settings like tonight. We work hard to bring individuals and groups to campus that represent a wide spectrum of perspectives important in developing critical thinking and diversity competencies.
Danny Glover was asked about his appearance on the TV show, Brothers and Sisters….and he started his response with his signature laugh. It was a great night at UVM!