Over a thousand students from two dozen Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are set to make history at the 60th anniversary March on Washington this Saturday. Led by Rev. Al Sharpton, Martin Luther King III and Arndrea Waters King, this event is intended to be a powerful response to recent Supreme Court decisions undermining affirmative action and stalling student debt relief efforts.
HBCUs and Affirmative Action
HBCUs have a long-standing tradition of nurturing future leaders. They’ve served as vital platforms for education, activism and empowerment for African American students. By mobilizing students from these institutions, the march emphasizes the ongoing need for civil rights progress in addition to equal opportunities while addressing continuing racial disparities in various sectors.
Enrollment at HBCUs has shown an upward trajectory in recent years. However, some HBCU leaders believe that the Supreme Court’s decision to end affirmative action could open doors for students who hadn’t previously considered these institutions. The result of the decision and the funding crisis cast a spotlight on the need for equity in education in the spirit of the original 1963 March on historic March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
March on Washington
This year’s march follows the Supreme Court’s divisive rulings that have not only shaken the foundations of affirmative action but also halted the Biden Administration’s efforts to alleviate the burden of student debt. Against these movements, HBCU college students are seizing the moment. This Saturday, these students and others are expected to raise their voices in pursuit of justice, equality and systemic change.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s historic “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963 isn’t merely being commemorated; it’s being carried forward as a commitment to his vision of a progressive society.
The march is an urgent call to action against all forms of discrimination and inequality, particularly in areas like employment, housing and education, as well as the prevalence of racially motivated violence and continued challenges to the rights of women, the LGBTQ community, immigrants, people of color and democracy.
Supported by a diverse range of organizations like the National Action Network and Drum Major Institute, the event symbolizes unity across generational and cultural divides. More than 100 organizations spanning racial, cultural and generational backgrounds will be uniting to commemorate the 60th Anniversary of the March on Washington.
The day’s schedule includes a pre-program session at 8:00 a.m. ET followed by the main program at 11:00 a.m. ET, culminating in a march through the capital’s streets.
Additional information including a full list of the 200 partner organizations can be found at www.mow2023.com.
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