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Coalition to ‘March on USF’ Tuesday

Ever wondered what it was like during the March on Washington n 1963? Wonder no more. On Tuesday, a re-enactment of that event will take place at USF.

Tuesday marks the 73rd anniversary of the birth of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. In commemoration of the civil rights movement and the achievements of King, the Coalition of Progressive Student Organizations has organized the March on USF.

The march will provide students and faculty at USF an opportunity to re-enact the 1963 March on Washington, a movement that united more than 250,000 people. This historic event led to King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech and encouraged Congress to pass the Civil Rights Act.

Braulio Colon, a representative for the Coalition of Progressive Student Organizations at USF, said the event was important and the civil rights leader’s memorial behind the Phyllis P. Marshall Center was a good place to celebrate King’s life.

“The march will celebrate the overall humanity of Dr. King and his efforts for unity and peace,” Colon said. “Much of his life is forgotten, and the MLK Jr. Plaza on campus provides a good place on campus to respect and remember him.”

The March on USF will run Tuesday from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Presidents for organizations associated with the Coalition will lead the march from the Student Services building to the MLK Plaza on campus.

Colon said club leaders will display signs and visuals signifying the event while the march is in progress.

Toward the end of the march, Progressive Coalition club presidents are expected to speak on issues surrounding civil rights and King, Colon said.

“Not only will supporters of the event get to participate in the march and visual presentations, but the speeches will be a good alternate avenue to exploring different civil rights issues,” said Sunshine Martinez, president for the USF Student Environmental Association and a board member for the Coalition of Progressive Student Organizations.

“Working as a board member on the Progressive Coalition has been a really good experience, especially during the march’s organization. It has been eye-opening to participate in addressing different issues like civil rights.”

Clubs involved in the Coalition of Progressive Student Organizations are scheduled to participate in the march. When the demonstration convenes at the MLK Plaza, club presidents are scheduled to re-enact King’s “I Have a Dream” speech for the audience.

Colon said afternoon classes would produce a respectable turnout and that he expects a supportive and impressive gathering.

“Campus should be packed during the scheduled event times,” he said.

The March on USF is open to the entire student body and faculty.

  • Contact Mike Kerrigan at