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University Relations

University of Central Missouri
Administration 302
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660-543-4640
Fax: 660-543-4943


Tickets Available for Annual Scholarship Dinner

Contact: Mike Greife
WARRENSBURG, MO (Dec. 20, 2007) – Tickets are available for the annual Freedom Scholarship Dinner, the highlight of the 2008 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration at UCM.

Earvin “Magic” Johnson Jr., founder and CEO of Magic Johnson Enterprises and founder of the Magic Johnson Foundation, will be the keynote speaker for the event, planned for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 22, in the Elliott Union ballroom. Bryan Busby, meteorologist for KMBC-TV, channel 9 in Kansas City, MO, will serve as the master of ceremonies.

The dinner is the highlight of UCM’s annual celebration honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarships in the amount of $2,000 will be presented to six high school seniors from the Kansas City area and Johnson County, MO, and three $1,000 scholarships will be presented to current UCM students, enhancing the opportunities for all recipients to continue their college educations.

The scholarships are funded through proceeds from the tickets sales for the dinner. Individual tickets for the dinner may be purchased at the gold level for $100, the silver level for $75, or the bronze level for $50 by contacting the UCM Office of Community Engagement, Elliott Union 224, at 660-543-4156.

Corporate table sponsorships are available at the gold, silver and bronze levels by contacting the UCM Office of Corporate Relations, Humphreys 403, at 660-543-4755.

In addition to the Freedom Scholarship Dinner, the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration offers a variety of events that celebrate King’s legacy.  The annual Community Services Awards will be presented at the monthly Greater Warrensburg Area Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center luncheon Wednesday, Jan. 9, and an issues forum is planned for Wednesday, Jan. 16. The Warrensburg Ministerial Alliance will host an ecumenical worship service Sunday, Jan. 20, at the First Church of the Nazarene in Warrensburg, and the annual gospel concert is planned for Monday, Jan. 28. Wrapping up the schedule of events it the blood drive planned for Jan. 29-30.

Johnson’s visit is made possible through the corporate sponsorship of Sodexho, the university’s dining services provider. Johnson was elected to the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002 in recognition of his accomplishments during the 13 years he spent with the LA Lakers. He signed with the team in 1979 and went on to become a member of five championship teams, with honors including being a three-time recipient of both the Most Valuable Player Award and the Finals MVP Award, 12-time All-Star, and nine-time member of the All-NBA First Team.

More recently, Johnson has played the role of entrepreneur and philanthropist. Magic Johnson Enterprises has invested in inner-city neighborhoods to bring shops and services found in more affluent areas, and the Magic Johnson Foundation has raised more than $20 million for charity, including efforts aimed at breast cancer awareness, scholarships for minority students, asthma education, muscular dystrophy, and AIDS-related projects, just to name a few.

Limited seating is available for the Freedom Scholarship Dinner. For more information about UCM’s 2008 Dr. Martin Luther King Celebration or the Freedom Scholarship Dinner, contact the UCM Office of Community Engagement at 660-543-4156.