"No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.
"Fifty years ago, Martin Luther King Jr. gave his moving "I Have a Dream" speech in Washington D.C. before a crowd committed to unity, equality and freedom. Today, the Black Cultural Center is working to keep these ideas alive with a few upcoming projects.
Perhaps their largest event this year, the BCC will hold a Day of Dialogue on Oct. 4 at 10 a.m. Shawnboda Mead, associate director for Diversity and Multicultural Education, describes the event as a "campus-wide diversity symposium," where everyone is welcome and honest discussion is encouraged. The event will feature speaker Art Munin, author of "Colors by Number," a book urging the reader to combat racism.
After a lecture, break-out sessions focusing on diversity and topics like race, ethnicity and sexual orientation will follow. The event will also allow time for people to discuss UT's climate and diversity on campus.According to Keenan Phinizee, senior majoring in food science technology with a pre-pharmacy concentration, it is programs like the Day of Dialogue that strengthen the BCC community, engendering genuine friendships among students. Phinizee remembers how much the staff and students at the BCC helped him his freshman year, and how they provided him with a "sense of family."
BCC is also continuing the cultivation of the center's Diversity Incentive Fund, through which students or campus organizations can request money to run events that promote cultural diversity on campus. The maximum amount of money available is $500.
All submitted applications go through a committee, which then awards funding. The priority deadline is Sept. 30.UT administrators have noticed the Center's enormous success since its opening in 2002, and are actively seeking to expand its services further through private funds. The Dream to Reality Courtyard Brick Project is an example of the booming interest. Alumni, current students and organizations can pay to have their name, or a message, inscribed into a brick, while making a donation to the Black Cultural Center. The money will be used to finance various events, including tutoring programs.Mead expressed high hopes for the fundraiser, calling it an "opportunity to give back."
The Black Cultural Center, located on 1800 Melrose Ave., can be reached at 865-974-6861 or through email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Multicultural Student Life can also be followed on Twitter at @MSL_UTK or liked on Facebook.