Selma's 50th Anniversary of the Voting Rights Act March from Selma to Montgomery
Approximately 25 AUM students participated in the 50th Anniversary of Bloody Sunday; while navigating an estimated crowd of 80,000 people, students listened to the Reverend Jesse Jackson, the Reverend Al Sharpton, and similar civil rights leaders' challenges of keeping the spirit of the Bloody Sunday alive and meaningful. During reflection periods, students shared the following comments:
"I learned that many people care what happens to African-Americans."
"We take so much for granted."
"I will register to vote. Seeing and hearing everything today caught my attention. I should have registered a long time ago."
[I will use this experience] "by voting and telling as many people as possible the significance of voting."
"Powerful speakers can take you far."
"Let them know voting is important."
"I will use what Martin Luther King III, said about voting to help the youth understand how important our vote is..."
Day of the Dead
The AUM community learns how to honor their departed loved ones within the context of Mexican culture. AUM Student Affair's Diversity Office collaborates with World Languages & Cultures to create a Day of the Dead Table open for all to honor loved ones. The event culminates with a brief talk and food.
Kwanza and Hanukah: Rituals of a Shared Struggle
The audience learns historical collaborations between African Americans and Jews during and prior to the Civil Rights Movement. This event positions Judaism as a culture, then explores its history in America as a parallel to that of the African American experience. Facilitators also speak briefly to specific roles Jews played in social movements, then they provide abbreviated versions of Hanukkah and Kwanzaa rituals.
African American Alumni Reception
In collaboration with Alumni Affairs, this event is an example of how AUM Student Affair's Diversity Office can collaborate with other units to create institutional impact. The reception reunites African American alumni with current faculty, administrators, and students throughout the campus. Alumni Affairs has engaged this group to help create scholarship opportunities for students.
AUM Women Speak!
In the form of a panel, AUM women-leaders (faculty, administrators, staff-members, etc.) throughout the campus share their personal/professional journey in a context of diversity-education and mentoring. The women represent diversity in its traditional and evolving aspects. Furthermore, their experiences position them as mentors for younger women and others in the AUM community.
The Martin Luther King, Jr. Reflections Seminar
Beginning as a Martin Luther King, Jr. Reflections Breakfast, this event has evolved into an evening celebration. Primarily a student-planned and facilitated celebration grounded in diversity and leadership skills. Students who represent diversity in its broadest sense share ideas of how youth culture can keep Dr. King’s dream relevant to succeeding generations. This sharing often includes a brief keynote speaker.
Thanks Giving Around the World
This celebration helps students see how giving thanks and celebrating family and community is a global experience with different names. Students from many countries, including America, spend a few minutes explaining their cultural festival that resembles America’s traditional Thanksgiving celebration.