Each year, the Office of Institutional Diversity & Equity, together with the Office of Conferences and Special Events, arranges a program to celebrate the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The program theme varies each year, but we are always trying to explore what we learn in our society and what shapes us as we negotiate the diverse world that surrounds us. Throughout our celebration, we attempt to acknowledge a number of very powerful and competing dynamics in US history; some of them affirm our humanity, some detract from our common humanity.
A campus that values difference and supports diversity is a campus that encourages its members to explore the complexities that are central to intellectual life. Matters of race, ethnicity, and gender are not always easy to confront. But they must be confronted for issues concerning them are critical to this society and must be understood by those who would seek to lead it. A diverse campus enriches us all. The observance of Martin Luther King Day provides us with the opportunity to recognize and to celebrate that fact.
Dartmouth has a charter commitment and a proud tradition of open access for all. We need to live up to that tradition and ensure that we not only provide equal access for all qualified students but that we also encourage a climate at the College that is open and accepting of difference. An academic community can afford to be no less than this.
Dr. King's 1962 speech delivered at Dartmouth College
Last Updated: 1/20/11