Carnegie Mellon University

Image of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

January 14, 2022

Celebrating the Legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dear Members of the Carnegie Mellon Community:

As we prepare to honor the powerful legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Monday, we are pleased to announce Soledad O’Brien as this year’s MLK Keynote Speaker. O’Brien is an award-winning documentarian, journalist, speaker, author and philanthropist who has impacted the national dialogue on global social and political issues. Her lecture will focus on disrupting and dismantling systemic racism by sharing voices and perspectives that often go unheard. The keynote lecture will be held on February 8. To learn more, visit the University Lecture Series website.

Each January, our country and our CMU community reflect upon Dr. King’s teachings and impact as a giant of the civil rights movement and as a fierce advocate for education. Dr. King once said that the function of education is to teach one to think intensively and critically. He believed that learning how to look critically at the world and understand how it works could empower each of us to enact real and lasting change toward a more just society.

As we celebrate Dr. King’s legacy, Carnegie Mellon’s Office of the Vice Provost for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Office and the Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion have partnered with campus departments, Pittsburgh area organizations and thought leaders from across the country to produce a series of lectures, discussions and service projects that will take place in the coming weeks and months. Please view our Martin Luther King, Jr. program schedule online for a full listing of events, which are free and open to all members of our community.

Although we are not able to gather for many of our traditional in-person events this Monday, we invite you to pause on the holiday to reflect on how you can uplift Dr. King's legacy by taking personal action to create a more equitable and inclusive campus environment in 2022. We look forward to gathering as a community to be inspired by Dr. King's example of spreading a sense of togetherness and hope throughout the world.


Gina Casalegno, Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students

Wanda Heading-Grant, Vice Provost for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer