Salem Campus Planning May 4 Observances

Throughout the Spring 2020 semester, the Salem Campus will join with the university to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the events of May 4, 1970, on the Kent State Campus. 

A series of events and activities is planned to focus attention on this historical time in American history. Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to participate and/or attend these events, as well as to invite friends and family.

The current list of activities is listed below. Please note that additional events may be added throughout the semester or there may be slight changes to these events (times, locations) that may coincide with other campus activities.

The Age of Aquarius
January through May
Salem Campus Classroom Building
To create an atmosphere of the 1960s and 1970s, the campus will host a display of period clothes throughout the buildings Some of the items were worn by students attending Kent State in 1970, while others are on loan from the Kent State School of Fashion and/or from the Theatre Department (costumes worn in the stage production of Hair). The campus will also display books about this event, Kent State memorabilia (a 1970 Kent State yearbook, sorority pin, cover of Life Magazine, etc.) and images portraying pop culture from this time, including a poster of a draft lottery board). 

Fire in the Heartland: Kent State, May 4th and Student Protest in America
Wednesday, Feb. 12     noon-1:30 p.m.
Thursday, March 12    5:30-7 p.m. (CANCELED)
Room 134 – Lecture Hall
Open to public
This is a documentary film about a generation of young people who stood up against social injustice during some of our nation’s most turbulent and transformative years, the 1960s through the 1970s. This is an award-winning documentary that was written and produced by Daniel Miller, who was a student on campus that year. 

Student Trip to May 4 Center (CANCELED)
Friday, April 3
10 a.m. to Noon
Many students are unaware of the important and leading role Kent State University played in the civil rights movements of the 1960s and 1970s, as well as the tragic events of May 4, 1970. This trip to the May 4 Center will enhance historical insight into these events and how history was made on the local, regional and national levels. For details about participating in this trip, contact Dr. Sue Wamsley, history professor, at

Salem Remembers May 4, 1970 
Thursday, April 16
Reception at 5:30 p.m.
Program at 6:30 p.m.
Academic Learning Commons
Open to public
Local residents will share their stories and remembrances of what happened at Kent State on May 4, 1970, during a panel discussion. These will be personal accounts from a variety of perspectives, some from Kent State students at that time. The panel will be co-moderated by Dr. David Dees, interim vice president for System Integration and dean of the Columbiana County campuses, and Professor Karen Cunningham from the School of Peace and Conflict Studies.

May 4 Voices
Thursday, April 30
5:30-7 p.m.
Room 134 – Lecture Hall
May 4 Voices is a play that brings together first-person narratives about the May 4, 1970, events at Kent State University. This video production of the play, written by David Hassler and directed by Katherine Burke, is based on the Kent State Shooting Oral History Project. It includes more than 115 interviews with National Guardsmen, students, townspeople and politicians. The interviews capture the sense of trauma, confusion and fear felt by the people who witnessed or who were involved with the May 4 events. 

POSTED: Tuesday, January 14, 2020 02:04 PM
Updated: Thursday, March 12, 2020 03:31 PM