Two years ago, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day first enjoyed full recognition by the UR administration, allowing students to take the day off from classes and giving them the opportunity to reflect on his legacy. UR’s emphasis on sharing King’s influential teachings with students should be praised. Events organized in the past initially suffered low attendance, causing many student and administrative leaders to complain about an “apathetic” student body. However, this trend was reversed through substantial enthusiasm and support from members of the UR community this year.

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Conference is a successful move towards a meaningful recognition of diversity and community awareness that can noticeably improve the college experience. The day’s activities should be applauded for reinforcing the sense of community service championed by King. For instance, the Information Expo educated the student body about the various campus organizations that best exhibit his values.

Despite the conference’s recent establishment and a fresh snowstorm, community leaders and members of the student body admirably observed the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. through a wide range of activities including a luncheon and a keynote speech by Malik Evans, ’02.

This year’s conference showed the significant support of the Rochester community by drawing numerous local leaders, educators and UR students.

A college community should appreciate the emphasis that the day’s events placed on education. Many efforts were made to emphasize community involvement in education improvement and to focus on issues that are infrequently discussed on the River Campus.

The symposium held this Monday illustrates the administration’s commitment to achieving diversity, activism and community service, especially in the realm of education.

UR should continue to improve upon this celebration in the years to come.

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