The University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is accepting submissions for the second annual “Word from the Mountaintop” Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Oratory Contest.
Local high school and two-year and four-year college students will have the opportunity to honor King’s legacy by reflecting on his words and connecting his message to issues facing the nation in the 21st century.
Students will gather inspiration from King’s “Beyond Vietnam” speech, and will be asked to answer the question, “What would you say to encourage listeners to act to preserve the best in our U.S. democratic society?”
“Dr. King’s ‘Beyond Vietnam’ speech was one of his most provocative and radical messages,” said Paulette Patterson Dilworth, vice president for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at UAB. “The speech and assigned quote were specifically chosen to challenge students to assess what King’s words meant then and how they apply to the current state of affairs in our nation and beyond today.”
The top three written speeches from each division, both high school and college, will be ranked as finalists, and their writers will be invited to participate in the oratorical portion of the competition. Prizes will be awarded to all finalists, and a grand prize will be given to the overall winner from each division at the finalist competition, which will be held Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019.
Other competition sponsors include UAB Student Diversity and Multicultural Programs, the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, Urban Impact, Inc., United Way of Central Alabama, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Birmingham Southern College, Jefferson State Community College, Samford University, and the City of Birmingham.
The deadline to submit speeches is Friday, Jan. 4, 2019, by 5 p.m. Finalists will be announced Sunday, Jan. 20, 2019.
For more information, please visit www.uab.edu/dei.