Students, faculty, staff and alumni from across the University of Alabama at Birmingham community joined together to participate in the second annual Creed Week. Last year, UAB developed its creed, or statement of belief, which centers around the tenets of honor and integrity, diversity,innovation, service and scholarship.These beliefs, which are put into practice all year long, are the embodiment of the Blazer Way.

Creed Week 2020 kicked off on January 20 with the MLK's Beloved Community service activity. UAB students, faculty and staff honored the legacy and memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by performing acts of service throughout the city of Birmingham.

Social media influencer and mental health advocate Demetrius Harmon gave a lecture that was a highlight of the week. During the talk, he shared with a near-capacity crowd his own struggles with mental health challenges, as well as building and maintaining his brand in the world of social media.

"I loved the lecture," said Jamea English, a freshman who is majoring in biomedical science. "He was very honest and open. That's one thing that I loved about Demetrius is that for somebody who suffers from so many types of mental illnesses and to be so big on social media, he's such a brave person."

The Spark Your Fire Arts Competition anchored the week. Student pianist Dina Kasman and poet Lynne Zhou each took first place honors.

The UAB Social Justice Advocacy Council officially capped Creed Week with its fourth annual Social Justice Conference, now named ORCA (Organized Radical Collegiate Activism). During the daylong series of lectures, undergraduate, graduate and professional students from across the state discussed issues on social justice, diversity and inclusion. Bushra Amiwala, the youngest Muslim elected official in the country, served as the keynote speaker.

“Being able to participate in our society doesn’t just include the knowledge that you learn in classes,” said Andrew Bartholomew, a student who serves as the Social Justice Conference Coordinator, “it includes those interactions with people who are different from you.”

In addition to the activities during the week, students, faculty and staff had an opportunity to sign the creed as well as grab cookies and cards that featured the tenets.

As a way to celebrate those who live out The Blazer Way through their service to UAB, Student Affairs recognized the following Blazer Way Award winners: Kristen Bowen (staff), Boyi Guo (graduate student), and Hana Habchi (undergraduate student) for upholding the tenets of the creed.