FGCU students honor MLK’s past leadership, say ‘next person is you’

We celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day as a nation Monday, but students at FGCU decided not to wait.

A group of FGCU students rallied, marched and discussed Thursday how they could all follow King’s example and make a difference in the world.

“If Dr. Martin Luther King was here, one thing I think he would say for one is that he’s proud to see his people still marching on and still upholding the legacy and the ideals that he left with us,” Ostin Justice-Young said.

“Hearing the Martin Luther King Jr. ‘I Have a Dream’ speech and hearing him say that one day he hoped his children would not be judged by the color of their skin, and you know that we’re still being judged by the color of our skin to this day, it was a little hurtful,” Sadreena Colonel said. “I feel like he started to fight, and it’s all right to continue the fight because it’s not over yet.”

“I was the only black man in my hall. I was kind of feeling like an outcast,” Justice-Young said. “It felt very good to know that, not only were there minority students here, there are actually people of different identities that were here. It felt really good to see that.”

“Makes us feel like we’re not alone, have a support system, and seeing allies makes it even better,” Colonel said.  “People think that to be a leader you have to be the president of an organization, but that’s not true. The leader’s within you.”

“It is our responsibility to educate those who do not know,” Colonel said. “A lot of people feel like it’s not their job to inform others, but I think if we don’t go out there and tell them, they’ll never know.”

“A lot of people are ignorant, and we should not judge people off of their ignorance, but we should provide them an opportunity to learn,” Dominique Mobley said. “That’s why all of us are here today.”

“A lot of the times I sit back and watch because I’m waiting for that next person to step up and be the leader, but we have to realize that, a lot of times, you’re waiting for the next person, the next person is you,” Cedrick Dunham said.

The students sang, spoke, and they listened quietly to a recording of Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous speech.

Reporter:Sydney Persing
Writer:Jack Lowenstein
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