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About 500 UT students will celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day on January 19 by attending a leadership conference and working on service projects around the Knoxville community.

Two UT traditions—the Clifton M. Jones Student Leadership Conference and the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service—have merged this year.

The event kicks off in the University Center and will last from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The morning includes three sessions offering more than thirty different programs and speakers focusing on five different topics: social justice and servant leadership, growing in leadership, seasoned leadership, branding leadership, and impact careers and professional leadership.

Sam Davidson

The luncheon keynote speaker is Sam Davidson, co-founder of service organization Cool People Care and author of three books.

Then, from 2:00 to 5:00 p.m., the students will split into groups and work on service projects with various community agencies, including Beardsley Community Farm, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Water Angels Ministries, and Habitat for Humanity, The Center for Leadership and Service is hosting the conference.

Jessica Copeland, administrative assistant for the center, said she thinks the conference will “appeal to everyone from the newly developing leader to the senior leaders that are looking to bridge their student leadership experience into their professional careers.”

C O N T A C T :

Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,

Holly Gary (865-974-2225,