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Celebrating MLK: New Orleans college students host 'Little Rock Nine' member who helped desegregate America's schools

January 10, 2014

Just 56 years ago, Minnijean Brown Trickey joined eight other African-American teenagers to desegregate Central High School in Little Rock, Ark., as a part of the now-famous “Little Rock Nine.” This month, she will join hundreds of New Orleans college students in celebrating the life and legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. during a free, public event series.

Brown Trickey will speak at Loyola University New Orleans Saturday, Jan. 18 at 10 a.m. in the Danna Student Center's St. Charles Room as a part of 28th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Week for Peace—a four-day celebration running from Friday, Jan. 17 to Monday, Jan. 20.

“Loyola is spearheading the celebration this year, but it is really a combined effort of Loyola, Dillard, Tulane and Xavier universities,” said Robert Reed, assistant vice president for student affairs at Loyola and chair of the MLK committee this year. “The event series is a way for college students and the New Orleans community to keep King’s dream alive more than 50 years after he made that famous speech.”

During the Martin Luther King Jr. Week for Peace event series, actor and New Orleans-native Wendell Pierce will receive a lifetime achievement award. University representatives will present the accolade to Pierce during the MLK convocation and symposium event featuring Brown Trickey at Loyola.

Events in the series are sponsored by the four universities in the consortium and include:

  • A step team competition showcasing the talents of teams from all four universities set for Friday, Jan. 17 at 7 p.m. at Tulane’s McAlister Auditorium;
  • the MLK convocation and symposium Saturday, Jan. 18 at 10 a.m. in Loyola’s Danna Student Center St. Charles Room, including a keynote speech from Brown Trickey as well as breakout sessions; and
  • an interfaith service to commemorate King’s legacy set for 6 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 19 at Dillard’s Lawless Chapel, including performances from a combined university choir and scripture readings.

To close the celebration, more than 700 college students will take to the streets in New Orleans for a day of service set for Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday, Jan. 20. The students will participate in various community service projects, serving as volunteers around the Crescent City. Loyola’s Office of Mission and Ministry is also partnering with the Archdiocese of New Orleans for the day of service.

For media interviews, please contact Mikel Pak, associate director of public affairs at Loyola.

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Loyola at a Glance is written and distributed for the faculty, staff, students and friends of Loyola University New Orleans. It is published by the Office of Public Affairs, Greenville Hall, Box 909, 7214 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118. (504) 861-5888.

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