Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others? – The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is considered one of the architects of peace, justice, and equality in the world. The civil rights icon left a legacy that has inspired harmonious marches, speeches, tributes and parades across the globe. Not only has his dream resonated across the world, but Dr. King also left an indelible mark on Kentucky State University’s 130-year history. In 1957, the 28-year-old Baptist minister was a commencement convocation speaker at what was then called Kentucky State College. He was embraced by former President Rufus Atwood and our June graduates.

On this special holiday, January 16, Dr. King’s birthday is a call to action for Kentucky State University, Frankfort, and the world to help others in our communities. It is an ideal time to continue our acts of kindness throughout Frankfort. I’m proud of our campus community’s continued efforts to donate their time and skills to others.


The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., left, and Kentucky State College President Rufus Atwood attend the 1957 Commencement. Dr. King served as the commencement’s keynote speaker.

Last year, our University participated in several service projects such as partnering with the Frankfort Police Department to buy Christmas gifts for low-income families; cleaning a women’s shelter; sprucing up a local cemetery; as well as establishing partnerships with groups including ACCESS Soup Kitchen & Men’s Shelter, United Way and Frankfort Kiwanis.

Most recently, Kristopher Grimes, state specialist for nutrition and nutrition education and an assistant professor in the College of Agriculture, Food Science, and Sustainable Systems at Kentucky State University, spoke to  Franklin County Senior Citizens Center about nutrition and serving size recommendations. KSU student and agriculture major Trevor Claiborne, also known as “Farmer Brown,” has been traveling to elementary schools across the state to teach children about farming with a hip-hop style and catchy rhymes.

I strongly encourage everyone to honor Dr. King’s spirit of service by continuing to participate in community campaigns such as What Can You Do With KSU?. Feel free click here to fill out this form and share how you and/or your group made a difference.

Together, we can keep Dr. King’s mission alive.



Aaron Thompson,

Ph.D. Interim President


The 1957 Commencement Edition of The Kentucky Thorobred features Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at KSU

Candle Light Ceremony, Cheney Plaza
Tuesday, January 17
7 p.m.

Selma Viewing Party, Student Center Ballroom
Wednesday, January 18
8:00 p.m.

Dr. Martin Luther King Celebration Service Project, Student Center Game Room

Friday, January 20
6 p.m.

Dr. Martin Luther King Banquet, Student Life Ballroom

Monday, January 23
7 p.m.

Related content about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and KSU

If you or your organization are participating in an MLK event, please share your photos with us on social media with the hashtag #KYSUMLK.