Wes Harris delivers Princeton’s MLK Day observance keynote
January 25, 2016
Wesley Harris (MIT MLK Visiting Professor 1995-1996) delivered the keynote address at this week’s Princeton University Martin Luther King Day observance. In 1968, Professor Harris became the first African-American to receive a Princeton PhD in engineering. Among his many positions at MIT, Professor Harris is AeroAstro former department head at MIT and currently the Charles Stark Draper Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics.
Princeton University honored Martin Luther King Jr. during the January 18, 2016 ceremony featuring reflections on the civil rights leader’s legacy, remarks on the continued quest for racial justice in the United States, musical performances, and a recognition of community and campus service efforts.
In his keynote, Professor Harris spoke of his experiences growing up in Richmond, Virginia, in the 1940s and 1950s, and how a personal encounter with King shaped his life.
“The opportunity to speak at Princeton in celebration of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is an honor,” Harris said. “For this opportunity, and much, much more, I remain grateful to Princeton…So how did I get to Princeton and what impact did Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. have in the process?” Harris said, recalling the Richmond of his childhood.