Monday, January 15, 2018

Dear Howard University Community,

The Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday represents a time for us to unite as a nation in solidarity.

Even as we witness the nation’s discourse be tainted rather than elevated, I am reminded that Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a champion for justice whose courage challenged the morality of our nation and shaped minds across generations. In 1994, Congress designated this holiday as a national day of service—a "day on, not a day off."
Dr. King, who would have been 89 years old today, was only 26 years old during the Montgomery bus boycott and 28 years old when he received the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws from Howard University. In light of the nation’s most pressing issues and consistent attacks against the innocent, the necessity for HBCUs and their ability to see in students what students do not yet see in themselves remains evident. Howard University is still committed to providing our students with the tools necessary to bring their dreams of a safer and juster world to fruition.
I urge all members of the Howard community to continue to speak out against hate and violence against all; with no exclusion to race, ethnicity, religion, gender, skin tone or the way one chooses to love and to remember the profound words of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
Today is especially significant because it presents an opportunity for each of us to honor Dr. King by coming together to help meet the needs of our communities. I am especially proud of how the Howard University community has stood together in moments of comfort and convenience but most importantly in moments of challenge and controversy, and I thank you for your continued support.
Howard University remains at the forefront of educating the freedom fighters of our time and continues to answer the call to address the nation’s challenges. I look forward to welcoming our undergraduate, graduate, and School of Social Work students, faculty, and staff back to campus tomorrow for what will undoubtedly be a successful Spring 2018 semester. 

Excellence in Truth and Service,
Wayne A. I. Frederick, M.D., MBA