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Beavers Utilize MLK Day as a ‘Day On’ in service

January 19, 2022 5:30am

(story by Tim Gallagher)

Buena Vista University students used a day off from class on Monday as a “day on” in service, one way to remember and honor the legacy of the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Students and staff members packed 625 meal kits for distribution to those in need through Upper Des Moines Opportunity, Inc., in Storm Lake. Other students joined BVU staff in volunteering at Our Place in Storm Lake. While still more assisted at The Bridge in Storm Lake. All the efforts took place on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

“I am truly humbled by and exceedingly thankful for the selfless sacrifice and altruistic efforts of the several BVU students, faculty, staff who chose to take a ‘day on, not a day off’ to volunteer and give back to the BVU and Storm Lake communities in order to celebrate and honor the work, life, and legacy of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.,” said Dr. Joel Berrien, Senior Director of the BVU Center for Diversity & Inclusion. “I am excited to see others here at BVU share a similar dream that I have, akin to Dr. King’s dream, that ‘everybody can be great because anybody can serve…’ and that ‘we must walk on in the days ahead with an audacious faith in the future…’”

Brandon Foster, a senior business education major from Waycross, Ga., recalled participating in parades in his hometown on MLK Day. He was pleased to be able to help assemble hundreds of meal kits in Siebens Forum on this special day.

“Anything we can do to help someone less fortunate, whether it’s big or small, we should do it,” said Foster.

 BVU senior pre-law major Jennifer Martinez, of Gary, Ind., filled meal kits with nearly one dozen peers throughout the morning. “If someone else can benefit from me getting up this morning and helping in this way, then it’s worth it,” she said.

Berrien quoted King in saying, “the time is always right to do what is right,” while reflecting on a day spent serving others.

“So, let us strive to resoundingly answer ‘life’s most persistent and urgent question: What are you doing for others?’ by realizing that ‘whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.’

“Therefore, Beavers,” Berrien concluded, “let’s continue to build on the foundation we’ve laid!”