Skip to main content
Michigan State University

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

banner picture of people whom were important to black history with Dr. M.L. King in the middle


MLK Jr. Short Biography

In 1980, a graduate student led a successful campaign to begin celebrating the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at MSU.

In 1986 Martin Luther King Jr. Day was established as a U.S. federal holiday and in 1998, Michigan State University's administration officially canceled the regular class schedule on the national holiday.

Since that time, each year on the third Monday in January, faculty, students, staff and surrounding communities join in the celebration of Dr. King to reflect on his message of civil rights and social justice for all through nonviolent means.


2014 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemorative Celebration


"Struggle for Justice -- Past, Present, and Future"

Exciting plans are underway for the 2014 celebration of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at Michigan State University. Every year the events get better and this year our major programs will launch Michigan State University's year-long initiative,.

In January 2014 Michigan State University will officially launch a year-long initiative, "PROJECT 60/50", to recognize two anniversaries involving major legislation that played a significant role in changing the daily lives of everyone in the United States. On May 17, 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court declared that state laws establishing separate public schools unconstitutional in Brown v. Board of Education, and on July 2, 1964 President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the Civil Rights Act, which became the nation’s benchmark civil rights legislation that continues to resonate in America.  These two prominent landmark decisions that took place 60 and 50 years ago (60/50) remain vital to us today and like many other colleges and universities around the nation, MSU will demonstrate its longstanding commitment to its land grant mission and the principle of equal opportunity for all.

We invite everyone to participate and ask that you share this information with others that you know. Please visit this site periodically for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. program updates.

If you have questions that the website doesn't answer, feel free to contact Audrey Bentley, Community Outreach Coordinator or call the Office for Inclusion at 517-353-3922, Monday through Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.

The MSU community is invited to participate in the annual commemoration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., especially in 2014 as we mark the anniversaries of two watershed 20th century civil rights events in American history. Conversations will be taking place across the university and throughout our local and state-wide communities about the importance of our civil and human rights. Although prompted by two profound pieces of American legislation, conversations about the rights of individuals are not confined to American borders.  A variety of events have been intentionally planned to reach out to and include everyone--faculty, students, staff and supportive members in our surrounding communities--domestic and international. The 2014 program promises to be informative, exciting and celebratory of the legacy of Dr. King. All events are free, accessible and inclusive.