City of Independence, Missouri

Independence Human Relations Commission invites students to participate in annual essay contest

The City of Independence Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Coalition is accepting entries for two essay contests ahead of its annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration scheduled for January 17, 2022.

The first of the two essay contests is open to eighth-grade students enrolled in Independence schools, and the second, the John Olivarez Scholarship Essay Contest, is open to local high school seniors.

The theme for both contests, as well as the upcoming MLK Celebration event, is “Where do we go from here?” The deadline for contest entries is December 20, 2021, and contest winners will be recognized during the upcoming MLK Celebration.

“With all that’s happening in the world, where do we go from here in a positive manner,” the Independence Human Relations Commission‘s Nina Falls said of the contests’ theme. “It’s been quite a year, and things are changing right in front of us, so I think everyone is questioning, What can I do, where do I go from here?”

In addition to their recognition at the MLK Celebration in January, the winning essayists will be presented the following prizes: The eighth-grade contest winner will earn a 2022 Family Pass to Adventure Oasis Water Park and a $50 cash prize. The winner of the essay contest for high school seniors will be awarded a $500 scholarship toward their post-secondary school of choice.

The MLK Celebration event is scheduled for January 17, 2022, at the Truman Memorial Building. The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Coalition will welcome Kylar W. Broadus as its speaker for the event.

Broadus, a Fayette, Missouri, native, is a black, transgender man, who has been a pioneer in the movement as an attorney, long-time activist, public speaker, author and professor. Broadus is known worldwide for his avant-garde work in the LGBT and Transgender movements.