Kent State May 4 50th Commemoration Monthly Events Calendar (September 2019)

*For media planning purposes, Kent State University is providing this monthly email that outlines all planned events for the upcoming month related to the 50th commemoration of May 4. For the latest updates on events, visit

Kent State University is honoring the 50th commemoration of May 4 with a yearlong observance of educational programs and events.

National Call for Poems (ongoing through April 21)
The Wick Poetry Center is now accepting poetry submissions that resonate with the themes of peace, conflict transformation and student advocacy. The center is accepting submissions in three categories: youth, adult student or adult non-student. Winners will receive cash prizes and trips to Kent State to present their poems. All winners will have their poems set to a musical composition by students in Kent State’s School of Music.

‘Fire in the Heartland’ Film Series (Sept. 6 at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., Taylor Hall 141)
“Fire in the Heartland: Kent State, May 4th and Student Protest in America” is a documentary film about a generation of young people who stood up to speak their minds against social injustice in some of our nation’s most turbulent and transformative years, the 1960s through the 1970s. 

Fashion Focus: ‘Wearing Justice’ Gallery Talk in the Kent State University Museum (Sept. 13 at 2 p.m., Kent State University Museum)
Join five faculty members from Kent State’s School of Fashion Design and Merchandising who will share their inspiration and process behind their designs for the exhibition that marks the 50th commemoration of May 4th. 

My Voice: A Global Community Poem (Sept. 15-May 4)
The Wick Poetry Center invites people from around the world to contribute a line or stanza to a global community peace poem titled “My Voice.” The themes of the poem will reflect peace, conflict transformation and advocacy. 

A Conversation With Sonia Sanchez (Sept. 18 at 5:30 p.m., Kent Student Center Kiva)
Sonia Sanchez, a recipient of the Anisfield-Wolf Fellowship, is a poet, playwright, activist and educator. She will discuss and offer her reflections on how poetry student activism, peace and civil rights brings change with an emphasis on the legacy of May 4. 

Poynter KSU Media Ethics Workshop (Sept. 19, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Franklin Hall)
The 15th annual Poynter KSU Media Ethics Workshop will address media ethics issues and covering activism. The workshop – titled “Act. Action. Activism?” – will feature a keynote address by the print and broadcast journalism teachers at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. The Media Ethics Workshop will also feature two sessions on media coverage and activism related to the events at Kent State on May 4, 1970.

Opening Reception for ‘Culture/Counterculture’ Exhibition (Sept. 19, from 5-7 p.m., Rockwell Hall)
The exhibition looks at fashions of the 1960s and early 1970s with a particular focus on the generation gap during that period. At the time of May 4, 1970, there was a sharp contrast between supporters of the establishment and those opposed – the culture and the counterculture. Kent State’s School of Fashion Design and Merchandising is presenting designs by faculty and students that use fashion to create a dialogue about war and peace, political discourse, conflict resolution and social justice today in the exhibition titled “Wearing Justice: Perspectives From KSU Fashion School Faculty and Students.”

Howard Ruffner ‘Moments of Truth’ Book Launch and Signing (Sept. 19, from 6:30-8:30 p.m., University Library)
Author and photographer Howard Ruffner celebrates the publication of “Moments of Truth: A Photographer’s Experience of Kent State 1970.” Ruffner became a witness and documentarian to the historic events of May 4, 1970. His intensely personal book collects nearly 150 of his photographs, including those that appeared in Life magazine, as well as many never before published.

Media Contacts:
Eric Mansfield,, 330-672-2797
Emily Vincent,, 330-672-8595

May 4, 50th Commemoration Project Manager:
Rod Flauhaus,, 330-672-2423

POSTED: Wednesday, September 4, 2019 - 10:36am
UPDATED: Tuesday, October 1, 2019 - 11:47am
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