Carnegie Mellon University

Celebrating the Life & Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Schedule of Events 2020

MLK Keynote Lecture 2020

"Eloquent Rage"

Brittney Cooper

Tuesday, February 25, 4:30 p.m. 
Cohon University Center, McConomy Auditorium

Sponsored by the President's Office, University Lecture Series, Center for Student Diversity & Inclusion, and Dietrich College Humanities Scholars Program

"I Have a Dream": Children's Programming

Monday, January 20, 1 p.m - 2:30 p.m.

Cohon University Center, Kirr Commons

Students from Pittsburgh's Linden K-5 school will unveil an art display about the life and social impact of Dr. King. Musical selections and short monologues will also be featured. All members of the campus, their families and the local  community are encouraged to attend. Refreshments will follow the presentations.

Children's Programming - all children present will also receive a special educational activities booklet about the life & legacy of Dr. King.

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Writing Awards 

Monday, January 20, 4:30 p.m. reception, 5 p.m. program

Cohon University Center, Rangos Ballroom

Join us in celebrating the 21st Annual MLK Writing Awards. High school and university award recipients will read from their personal narratives addressing individual experiences with racial difference and discrimination. To learn more about the awards and this year's featured winners, please visit the Department of English website. The writing awards and celebration are sponsored by the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Department of English and the Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion.

The celebration will also feature musical and artistic performances by students from Carnegie Mellon's College of Fine Arts.  

MLK Days of Service

Please join fellow CMU community members for a signature service project.

Providence Connections

Saturday, January 18, 9:30 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Providence Connections is a comprehensive Family Support and Early-Childhood Education Center that provides comprehensive education and developmental opportunities for parents and children. During this service trip, you’ll help support their mission by proving helping them prepare their kitchen for the needs of the new year.

RSVP for the Providence connections 

Bagged Lunch Project

Tuesday, January 21, 4:30 - 6:30 p.m.

Cohon University Center, Rangos 1

SLICE and the student organization, Partners Allied in Civic Engagement (PACE), will be packaging bagged lunches to benefit the Light of Life Rescue Mission.

Grounded Strategies

Saturday, January 25, 9:30 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Grounded Strategies is an organization that revitalizes vacant land and transforms it into community assets neighborhoods want to see implemented in their community. These youth-created green spaces provide opportunities for outdoor STEM learning for youth in some of Pittsburgh's most distressed communities. During this service trip,  you’ll help Grounded Strategies prepare their working spaces.

RSVP for the grounded strategies


Neurodivergent Dialogue

January 24, 5 p.m.

The Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion

Do you find it difficult to connect to other people? Do you see the world through a different lens than those around you? Do you desire a place to belong on campus? Are you interested in exploring new forms of human diversity? If you answered “yes” to any of those questions, join us to help us define cognitive diversity and build a community around it! There will be free food!

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to Sebastien La Duca at

Pittsburgh Racial Justice Summit 

Saturday, January 25, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

The Center for Student Diversity Inclusion will provide free registration for a limited number of students to attend this hallmark Pittsburgh community conversation. The summit features panels, workshops and interactive dialogues aimed at coalition building toward eradicating racism. For 22 years, this event has brought together thousands of people to find ways to collaborate in the struggle against racism, to work to eliminate police brutality and to build bridges among our communities.

If you are interested in being a CMU student attendee, please sign up at the Carnegie Mellon Pittsburgh Racial Justice Summit .

For more information about the summit, please visit


A Black Male Summit Dinner Discussion Series: Black Masculinity 102

Monday, January 27, 6 p.m.

Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion

Last year at the inaugural Black Male Summit, we took a dive into representations of Black manhood and with Black Masculinity 101. This year we'll be taking the conversation to the next level, exploring the diversity of Black men's gender and sexual identity and expression. Thomas Rainey and Kevin Jarbo will be leading the interactive dinner discussion. This event is open to all Black men in the Carnegie Mellon community, including students, staff, faculty, administrators, and alumni. Dinner will be provided for the first 25-30 attendees. 

RSVP for the dinner 


Student Speaker: Application Deadline

Applications are now open. Applications are due on January 30, 2020.

The selected student speaker will present a 2-3 minute talk prior to the MLK Keynote Address on Tuesday, February 25 at 4:30 pm in McConomy Auditorium, Cohon University Center.

All student submissions will participate in a 30 minute interview that will be conducted by selection committee from the Center for Student Diversity & Inclusion. Interviews will be individually scheduled upon submission of the speaker application.

MLK Interfaith Breakfast

Friday, January 31, 8:30 a.m. breakfast, 9 a.m. program

Cohon University Center, Rangos

"Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase." Martin Luther King Jr.

Members of the Carnegie Mellon community are invited to an informal breakfast with campus and community interfaith leaders followed by fellowship and conversation about the life and legacy of Dr. King through the lens of faith, activism and social justice. The breakfast will begin at 8:30 a.m. with the featured dialogue scheduled to begin at 9 a.m.

RSVP for the breakfast 

John M. Carey: “Campus Diversity: The Hidden Consensus”

Monday, February 3, 4:45 p.m.

Tepper Building, PNC Foundation Rooms

John M. Carey joins the Carnegie Mellon community in discussion of his forthcoming book Campus Diversity: The Hidden Consensus. John M. Carey currently serves as Associate Dean of Faculty for the Social Sciences. He was the chair of Dartmouth’s Department of Government from 2009-2015, and since 2014, he has served on the steering committee of Dartmouth’s program in Quantitative Social Science. Professor Carey is a co-founder of BrightLineWatch, which monitors threats to democracy in the United States.

This lecture is sponsored by the Center for International Relations and Politics and the Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion.

Black Male Summit 2020: Building Collective Community Wealth

Friday, February 7, 4:30 p.m.

Keynote Lecture by Dr. Rich Milner

Cohon University Center, McConomy Auditorium

A reception will follow the talk in the Center at 6 p.m.

Saturday, February 8, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Featured workshops will be hosted by Darrell Phillips, LCSW; Michael Moorer (Master's, ECE), Thomas Rainey (Mudge Housefellow), Olasubomi Adesoye (Master's, Tepper), Kawan Glover (Founder, Overcome Adversity), Kevin Jarbo (Postdoc, SDS & The Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion). Panelists include Claude King (PhD, BME), Branden Ballard (Tartan Scholars, Program Manager), Dr. Jason England (Assistant Professor, English), Dr. Stan Waddell (Associate Vice President and CIO)

view the full schedule of events 

Plateful of Pride: Black, Queer, and Fabulous

Featuring speaker Julian Arney (DC '14)

Monday, February 10, 5 p.m. dinner and discussion

Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion

On February 10th, join Julian Arney (PSY 2014) for QUEER BLACK AND FABULOUS.  Julian is a Production Coordinator with Uber and also serves as the Global Allyship & Education lead for Pride at Uber.  They will share their experiences being Black and Queer and advocating for both, locally and in their organization. Additionally Julian will talk about their approach to coming out in their workplace environment, and taking on leadership roles. Please RSVP to hold your space for dinner.  We hope you can join us!

RSVP for plateful of pride

Firearm Violence in the US: A Public Health Epidemic

Wednesday, February 12, 7 p.m. lecture

Tepper School of Business, Simmons Auditorium B

Speaker details coming soon.

This lecture is sponsored by PACE and the Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion.

Dr. Jaime Grant

February 13, 2020

Dr. Jaime M. Grant is the principal investigator for the historic 2011 National Transgender Discrimination Survey (NTDS) and its ground-breaking report, Injustice at Every Turn.

Lunch with transgender and non-binary community members

12 p.m., RSVP for location.

Free and open to trans and non-binary CMU community members

Come talk with Dr. Jaime M. Grant about your life at CMU, your concerns about all-gender inclusion and exclusion at the University, and your ideas for moving forward.  This will be an informal discussion and is closed to trans and non-binary identified community members.

All-Gender Inclusion: What does it mean? Why does it matter? What can I do?

2 p.m., Cohon University Center, Danforth Conference Room

Free and open to staff/faculty at CMU and outside institutions

Dr. Jaime M. Grant will talk about the experiences of genderqueer and gender expansive respondents in the study, opening a conversation about how faculty can create all-gender inclusive and expansive environments in our day to to day teaching and intellectual work with students. Register.

Making Way: Actionable Steps for All-Gender Inclusion

4:30 p.m. reception, 5 p.m. Workshop, Tepper School of Business, Simmons Auditorium A

Free and open to anyone.

Non-binary and genderqueer identities and expression are growing exponentially across the nation and around the world.  Dr. Jaime M. Grant will report on the experiences of more than a thousand genderqueers, gender rebels and genderfluid people in the NTDS. To the CMU community, Dr. Grant will present a set of questions and recommendations on how we can best create and support all-gender inclusive and expansive environments. Register.

CAUSE Lecture: Douglas Daniels

“The History and Mythology of So-Called Jazz"

Friday, February 21, 4 p.m. reception, 5 p.m. lecture and discussion

Roberts Hall, Singleton Room

Sponsored by the Center for Africanamerican Urban Studies and the Economy (CAUSE)

MLK Keynote Lecture 2020

"Eloquent Rage"

Brittney Cooper

Tuesday, February 25, 4:30 p.m. 
Cohon University Center, McConomy Auditorium

Sponsored by the President's Office, University Lecture Series, Center for Student Diversity & Inclusion, and Dietrich College Humanities Scholars Program

MLK 2020 Selected Readings

The Center has selected the following readings to be featured in upcoming MLK 2020 conversations: Citizen Illegal by José Olivarez, If They Come for Us by Fatimah Asghar, and Critical Race Theory: An Introduction by Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic.

Information on discussions hosted by the Center will be coming soon.

The Center has a limited quantity of each book. Request a copy here.