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PCC honors MLK with events across district

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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

On Jan. 15, the entire nation celebrated the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. PCC had plenty of events to honor the Civil Rights leader.

One of the largest events was the annual "Compelled by a Dream" Celebration honoring Martin Luther King, Jr., on Jan. 14 at the Southminster Presbyterian Church in Beaverton.

The event, sponsored by PCC, Inter-Religious Action Network of Washington County, Baha’is of Washington County and the City of Beaverton, featured remarks by Mayor Rob Drake, choirs of Hillsboro Community Youth, Joyful Noise, and Southminster Presbyterian Church, and keynote speaker Mahtab Mahmoodzadeh-Thomas, an educator who reflected on her volunteer work as a youth with the King Center in Atlanta.

A panel of people read excerpts from King’s most famous speeches. The event was emceed by Carlos Perez, chair of the newly-formed Human Rights Council of Washington County. The Inter-religious Action Network also announced the honoree of the Everyday Heroes Award, which recognizes citizens in Washington County for their work toward reconciliation and their commitment to community in the tradition of MLK.

Sylvania Campus
Due to the recent snow closure, the Sylvania Campus student government along with the Multicultural Center rescheduled their presentation "I have a dream" speech to Feb. 1. The speech will play on loud speakers in the CC Building mall. There will be an interactive display where people can write their comments on the impact of Dr. King on their lives and the world around them.
Rock Creek Campus
Also moved due to snow, was the Rock Creek Campus featuring a short video highlighting MLK’s life, titled "Compelled by a Dream" on Jan. 23. The film was created by PCC welding student and peer advisor Carlos Mercado. The film brings into question whether or not the country has reached MLK”s dream.
Service Learning Program
Even though the college was closed on Jan. 15 to observe the MLK holiday, for many it was a day-on. Jennifer Alkezweeny of PCC’s Service Learning program and other PCC staff paired with a little brother or little sister at Parkrose High School where they made crafts from recycled materials. The artwork will be displayed at a gallery downtown to raise awareness of Big Brothers, Big Sisters through Hands on Portland.
In 1994, Congress passed the King Holiday and Service Act designating the date of the Holiday as a national day of volunteer service. The Big Brothers, Big Sisters event echoed those sentiments by bringing together people who might not ordinarily meet, offering an opportunity to break down barriers and connect with the community.
"For these children, the opportunity to have an adult spend time with them meant a lot," said Alkezweeny. "We enjoyed the day doing crafts, telling stories, and laughing. More and more people are coming together as a living memorial to Dr. King who worked so hard to bring our country together. What better way to pay tribute than to join with your neighbors in service."

About James Hill

James G. Hill, an award-winning journalist and public relations writer, has been the Communications Specialist for the Office of Public Affairs at Portland Community College since November of 1999. A graduate of Portland State University, J... more »

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