St. Louis Community College at Florissant Valley and North County Churches Uniting for Racial Harmony and Justice’s annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration is now virtual.
The decision to offer the program virtually instead of having both in-person and virtual options was made to comply with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance regarding avoiding large gatherings in light of the coronavirus pandemic.
The virtual celebration is Tuesday, Jan. 18 from 6-7:30 p.m. and will include an opportunity to hear inspiring speeches, celebrate excellence in the community with a formal award presentation and more. The community is invited to enjoy the event by visiting stlcc.edu/go/fvmlkday or 89.5 KCFV-FM “The Wave.”
Michael P. McMillan, president and CEO of the Urban League of Metropolitan Saint Louis, will speak on the celebration’s theme, “We’re Better Together.”
McMillan is a member of the boards of directors of numerous organizations and has received hundreds of awards and commendations from various organizations. Most recently, he was inducted into the International Civil Rights Walk of Fame as its youngest member and named the 2020 Person of the Year by The St. Louis American.
Keeping with tradition, north St. Louis County students will lead and participate in the celebration. Tyler Hoskins, a freshman, graphic communications student at the College, will serve as emcee. Beyonce' Hightower and Javon Spearman, freshmen, general transfer students at the College, are the student speakers.
Participants will also hear winning speeches from NCCU’s Oratorical Contest and a musical performance of James Weldon Johnson’s “Lift Every Voice and Sing” by Alayna Epps, University of Missouri-St. Louis vocalist, accompanied by Paul Higdon, DMA, professor of music and pianist.
In addition to being inspired by rousing speakers and a musical performance, virtual attendees will learn more about why Emerson Electric Co. is being honored with the 2022 Dr. Rance Thomas Excellence in Community Partnership Award.
“I can’t begin to count all the ways Emerson has shown its support. Most recently, thanks to Emerson, STLCC-Florissant Valley is home of the Emerson STEM Academy, a program that ensures students are ready for STEM careers and majors after graduating from high school,” said Elizabeth Gassel Perkins, Ed.D., campus president and chief academic officer at St. Louis Community College at Florissant Valley.
“Emerson had a sincere interest in joining us in the work of preparing young minds for careers in science, technology, engineering, and math, and as a result, provided us with a $1 million grant that made creating the dedicated tutoring and learning space, covering the costs of books and materials for students, and making both transportation and enrichment programs possible.”