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Bentley Celebrates Vision of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

January 26, 2005

WALTHAM, Mass. - "Dream, question and achieve. Don't accept limitations that someone else tries to put on you. I had dreams and I still do."

Those words were just part of the message that keynote speaker Daphne Maxwell Reid delivered to Bentley students, faculty and staff at Tuesday's 19th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast. Before a standing room only crowd in the Executive Dining Room, Ms. Reid - perhaps best known for starring in the hit television series, 'The Fresh Prince of Bel Air' - shared stories ranging from her childhood in New York City and college days at Northwestern University to Hollywood fame and her current love as founder and co-owner of New Millennium Studios, Virginia's first full-service film studio.

"Understand the importance of integrity. It's vitally important that you choose the road you travel," said Ms. Reid. "Explore the depths of your dreams. Don't just let life happen. Take charge of your dreams and your trip through life."

In his welcome, Bentley President Joe Morone read a passage from David Halberstam's book, "The Fifties," reminding the audience that the civil rights movement and Dr. King's work originally stemmed from an ordinary, everyday incident - a woman named Rosa Parks simply riding the bus home from work.

"We are making progress towards Dr. King's vision, but we still face our challenges on this campus and in society," he said. "What Rosa Parks' story teaches us is that if we're to honor Dr. King's memory, we must pursue his vision with a call to action and to do whatever each of us can in our everyday lives."

Award Winners
Two members of the Bentley community were honored for their efforts to help minority students enhance their business skills and to transfer their academic knowledge into applicable situations.

"These recipients have helped students achieve their goals by placing their own personal needs aside in order to help others. Their proactive mentality has led to the betterment of students campus wide," said senior and award presenter Shevon Gibbons. "Even 37 years after his death, there are still influential people who emulate the practices of the Martin Luther King through their personal sacrifice and willingness to promote social change."

Professor of Management John Seeger led Bentley's highly successful Black MBA Case competition team, which most recently finished third in the nation in 2003. "Described by many as a competitor who is willing to go to great lengths to accomplish his goals, he is extremely dedicated to his students and devotes his free time to meet on weekends or after school during the evening hours."

Christina Brown, a senior Finance major, is an active volunteer with both the Fernald School and the New York Aquarium. She was the first Liberty Mutual Corporate Partner in Diversity Scholar, and has also served on the Black History Month planning committee and as Campus Life editor of the Vanguard. "She holds dearly the Bentley Beliefs and tries to demonstrate those principles through her actions. She treats others with a great deal of respect and is appreciative of all differences. A diligent and hard worker with the highest level of integrity..she is also one of the most humble students."

Sponsored by the President's Office, Multicultural Center, Spiritual Life Center and Student Activities, the breakfast also included performances by the Bentley Gospel Choir and the jazz ensemble "Galen."

BENTLEY UNIVERSITY is one of the nation’s leading business schools, dedicated to preparing a new kind of business leader – one with the deep technical skills, broad global perspective, and high ethical standards required to make a difference in an ever-changing world. Our rich, diverse arts and sciences program, combined with an advanced business curriculum, prepares informed professionals who make an impact in their chosen fields. Located on a classic New England campus minutes from Boston, Bentley is a dynamic community of leaders, scholars and creative thinkers. The Graduate School emphasizes the impact of technology on business practice, in offerings that include MBA and Master of Science programs, PhD programs in accountancy and in business, and customized executive education programs. The university enrolls approximately 4,100 full-time undergraduate, 140 adult part-time undergraduate, 1,430 graduate, and 43 doctoral students. Bentley is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges; AACSB International – The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business; and the European Quality Improvement System, which benchmarks quality in management and business education. For more information, please visit www.bentley.edu

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