Students Honored with U-M North Campus Deans' MLK Spirit Awards

Students Honored with U-M North Campus Deans’ MLK Spirit Awards

On January 21st, the 2016 North Campus MLK Spirit Awards were announced at the North Campus Awards Presentation. The event was created to recognize individuals and organizations within the North Campus student community whose leadership and service exemplify the spirit of Martin Luther King, Jr. at the University of Michigan. The work the students and organizations have done was recognized for the way it both embodies the spirit and nature of Dr. King’s work and keeps his legacy alive.

Students from the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance, the Penny W. Stamps School of Art and Design, Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, and the College of Engineering were recognized at the award ceremony.

Taubman College was represented by MLK Spirit Award winners Jamilla Afandi, Pierre Batton, Ryan Goold, and Salam Rida. Christopher Locke was additionally nominated for his work.

Afandi is the moving force behind the re-establishment of NOMAS, the National Organization of Minority Architects. She is the Michigan chapter president of what is now the largest NOMAS branch in the U.S.

Batton is actively participating in many roles around campus. For Taubman College, Pierre provides promotional materials and strategies to increase underrepresented minority populations and to highlight  the need for diverse urban planners. His commitment for justice is mirrored in his work as a Micro-Lending Administrator and Business Advisor for ProsperUS Detroit, which assists Detroit’s immigrant and minority businesses with entrepreneurship training and microloans.

Goold is currently shepherding the “Detroit Design/Build Dreamscape” initiative. Dreamscape, located in Detroit’s east side, will incorporate gardens and rain water retention facilities as well as make use of recycled materials and new technologies to inform youth about sustainable design and construction methods.

Rida has also worked to create and develop the “Detroit Design/Build Dreamscape.”This project aims to combine traditional and nontraditional play spaces into an innovative Dreamscape promoting critical, creative, skill-based learning and healthy, active play for the youth of this community.

Scott Fox, a Masters of Urban Planning student at Taubman College, received a special award at the ceremony as part of the “Agents of Change” exhibit. “Agents of Change” explores connections between racial diversity, campus climate, and experiences within the University and beyond.

The Taubman College student organizations Cultural Competency Collective and National Organization of Minority Architecture Students were also nominated for Spirit awards.