OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

OSU students honored for pursuing Martin Luther King's dream

01/25/2001

CORVALLIS - Three Oregon State University students have earned $1,000 scholarships each for their efforts to fulfill the ideals of Martin Luther King Jr.

Marco Antonio Chavez, Kelva Johnson and Jesse Jackson, all OSU juniors from Portland, were honored at the 15th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast, hosted by Portland's Skanner Newsgroup.

Chavez, a sociology major, is a 1998 graduate of Cleveland High School and has been a member of the OSU Air Force Reserve Officers' Training Corps. He has also served as internal and community outreach coordinator for the campus' Centro Cultural Cesar Chavez (Cesar Chavez Cultural Center).

"As internal coordinator, I worked to assure that the center was running smoothly, that schedules were met and meetings and other events were planned and staffed," Chavez said. "Of course, as outreach coordinator, I worked to bring our programs to the community."

Chavez is also active in OSU's Hispanic Student Union and the Educational Opportunities Program and works to recruit students of color to the university. He plans to attend graduate school.

Johnson, a 1998 graduate of Grant High School, is majoring in ethnic studies and is also focusing on writing, Chicano-Latino studies and Spanish. She is publications coordinator for the OSU Black Cultural Center and performs with the campus group Baila con Mexico (Dance with Mexico).

She has tutored students at OSU's Native American Longhouse and served as treasurer of the Black Student Union and secretary of the campus chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers. She also developed the university's diversity website.

Johnson is planning to go to graduate school and earn a doctorate in African American studies. "I want to do research into issues in ethnically diverse cities and universities," Johnson said. Jackson, a construction engineering management student, also is a 1998 graduate of Grant High School. He is active in Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity and is president of the OSU student chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers.

"I work in the OSU Minority Education Offices in retention-recruitment of minority students," he said. Jackson plans to attend graduate school and major in law or education and then plans to go into construction with the goal of owning his own construction business.

The awards were funded by Safeway, State Farm Insurance and Portland Tri-Met.