By Breanne Guevara
On Jan. 25 at 4 p.m, the Office of Multi Cultural Affairs held the third annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. award ceremony located in the Multi Purpose Room in the Gallagher Center. Avril Harbin and two graduate assistants organized the ceremony, with intentions of honoring King Jr.’s legacy.
Simone Beckford, a graduate assistant with the Multi Cultural Affairs Office explained the judging criteria.
“The award was going to be presented to the three candidates who showed a creative approach to Dr. King’s legacy and how it can be applied to today’s life.” The genre of submissions ranged from dancing, short stories, poetry, essays and more. The three candidates who captured Dr. King Jr.’s empowerment in the most admirable way were Elijah Vazquez, Madison Ruffo and Sr. Cecilia Odoemema.
Elijah Vazquez created a dance number that communicated a message of peace and tranquility by tap dancing and reciting a poem simultaneously. Madison Ruffo created an eye opening poem, titled “I Have a Nightmare” taking on the same notion as Dr. Kings speech “I Have a Dream.” Lastly, Sr. Cecilia Odoemema wrote an insightful essay explaining Dr. King’s purpose. Each of these candidates received $350.00 for their creativity and a recommendation letter if needed. The candidates were also presented the opportunity to recite their piece of work in front of the Niagara Community.