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College of Arts and Sciences

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Symposium

Martin Luther King Jr.

Monday, January 15, 2024
8:30 a.m. 4 p.m.
Bethany Hall (Virtual option also available)

In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., one of America's most revered advocates for racial justice and social change, the College of Arts and Sciences, in collaboration with the Division of Continuing Education and Professional Studies, will once again offer a special one-credit workshop to be held on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

The day-long event will be offered in-person with a virtual, livestream option. Pre-registration is required.

For those who wish to view the event virtually, a link to join the event will be sent via email upon registration.

This year, Obery Hendricks, Ph.D., Columbia University, will present the keynote address. Henricks is the author of the following critically acclaimed books: The Universe Bends Toward Justice: Radical Reflections on the Bible, the Church and the Body Politic (2011); The Politics of Jesus: Rediscovering the True Revolutionary Nature of Jesus’ Teachings and How They Have Been Corrupted (2006), a Dallas Evening News bestseller, and Living Water: A Novel (2003), a National & Essence Magazine bestseller. His newest book is Christians Against Christianity: How Right-Wing Evangelicals Are Destroying Our Nation and Our Faith (‎New York: Beacon Press, 2021). For additional information on Hendricks, please visit his website.

Additional course content for the day includes esteemed faculty colleagues presenting informative assessments of historical and contemporary issues and and applying their disciplinary skills to discuss a range of topics, including social experience, racism, sexism, classism, religious intolerance, hate speech, instructional content and teacher preparation.

As part of the symposium, participants will also have the opportunity to participate in an Interactive Community Idea Board to share their valuable insights, engage and interact with each other, identifying takeaways throughout the day, and share their commitment and actions that could extend beyond the event and into the participants’ communities.  

How to Register

If you are a Seton Hall:

  • Undergraduate who does *not* wish to receive credit
  • Graduate student
  • Alumnus/alumna
  • Employee
  • Member of the surrounding community (non-SHU)

Register Here

If you are a Seton Hall undergraduate looking to earn credit, please register for AFAM 3291: MLK Day Symposium (CRN: 14755) via PirateNet.

*Undergraduate students looking to earn credit must attend the symposium in-person or virtually and register via PirateNet for the credit. Students participating virtually must access the course through the virtual link.

Register Here


8:45 a.m. 

Musical and Historical Interlude – “Lift Every Voice and Sing”
Morehouse Glee Club Choir

9:00 - 11:30 a.m

Morning Programs


Symposium Introduction
Rev. Forrest Pritchett, Ph.D
Director, Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Program 


Statement of Academic Purpose
Jonathan Farina, Ph.D.
Interim Dean, College of Arts and Sciences 


Prayers for Peace and Harmony 
Clergy of the Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh and Protestant Faith Traditions


Litany for Martin Luther King, Jr.
Rev.  Forrest Pritchett, Ph.D.
Director, Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Program 


Welcome from the Provost
Erik Lillquist, J.D. 
Interim Provost and Executive Vice President


Katia Passerini, Ph.D.
Interim President


Keynote Introduction and Cultural Presentation
Rev. Forrest Pritchett, Ph.D.
Director, Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Program 


Keynote Address 
Obery Hendricks, Ph.D. 
Professor of Religion, Columbia University


MLK Leadership and Intellectual Legacy
Rev. Forrest Pritchett, Ph.D.
Director, Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Program 


"MLK Speaks on Leadership"
Student Voices, MLK Scholars Class of 2017

12 - 12:30 p.m.

Lunch Break

12:30 - 4:00 p.m.

Afternoon Program / Faculty Presentations


Faculty Discussions

  1. Racism and the Bible Charles Carter, Ph.D., Department of Religion
  2. History and RacismLarry Greene, Ph.D., Department of History
  3. Race as PrivilegeW. King Mott, Ph.D., Department of Political Science and Public Affairs
  4. Education and Racism – Rev. Forrest Pritchett, Ph.D. 
  5. Social Justice in the Nonprofit Sector – Roseanne Mirabella, Ph.D., Department of Political Science and Public Affairs; Jamila Davis, Ph.D., Center for Community Renewal and Engagement
  6. Paradigms of Peace and WellnessJuan Rios, Ph.D., Department of Social Work; Anthony Nicotera, Ph.D., Department of Social Work
  7. Africana Studies Faculty Panel – Faculty members teaching in the Africana Studies program reflect on MLK’s legacy and future considerations. Participants include Stephanie Harris, Ph.D., Director; Carm R. Almonor, Ph.D., JD., Nkosi Dubois Anderson, Ph.D., and Rev. Forrest M. Pritchett, Ph.D.
  8. Closing Rev. Dr. Forrest Pritchett, Ph.D.