Muhammad to Speak at ECC King Celebration
Descendant of Nation of Islam founder to talk about history of civil rights struggle
Essex County College will host its annual memorial tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on Tuesday, Jan. 22, from 11:30 am to 1 pm at the main Newark campus. The theme of the free program is “From the Emancipation Proclamation to the Civil Rights Movement to Today.”
The event, one of several commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation the college will hold this semester, is set for ECC’s Mary Burch Theater. The Emancipation Proclamation, which proclaimed slaves across America be “thenceforward and forever free,” was issued on Sept. 22, 1862 by President Lincoln and went into effect on Jan. 1, 1863.
Dr. Khalil G. Muhammad, Director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, will deliver the keynote address. Muhammad is the great-grandson of Elijah Muhammad, one of the founders of the Nation of Islam. A former professor of African-American history at Indiana University, Muhammad earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and his doctorate from Rutgers University.
The Schomburg Center is the research unit of the New York Public Library. For more than 80 years, the center has collected, preserved, and provided access to materials documenting black life and promoted the study and interpretation of the history and culture of people of African descent. The Schomburg is presenting “Visualizing Emancipation” – a collection of 80 pre– and post– Civil War era photographs – which is currently on display through March 16.
In addition to Muhammad, the memorial program will include a performance by the ECC Gospel Choir, conducted by Professor Richard Alston, coordinator of the College’s Music Department.
The memorial program is presented by the College’s Africana Institute and the Student Life & Activities Office. Additional information is available at 973.877.3219 or Africana@essex.edu.