WELLESLEY – MassBay Community College Interim President Yves Salomon-Fernandez will be the keynote speaker at World of Wellesley’s 16th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Breakfast and Celebration on Monday. The event will be held at Wellesley College.
“We are in the midst of a new civil rights movement with the country recognizing marriage equality,” said Salomon-Fernandez said in a press release. “Minority college-going rates are increasing, but not necessarily degree-attainment rates. We are seeing a new wave of brutality involving people of color. We have immigrants of certain faith being told that they are not welcome here. There is a role here for higher education and college presidents, specifically, to play in advancing the discourse on harmony and understanding one another beyond our campuses. I am grateful and delighted to have been chosen as the keynote speaker this year.”
World of Wellesley is a non-profit organization that seeks to make Wellesley "a welcoming community where diversity is celebrated," the release said.
The organization “is honored to have Dr. Salomon-Fernandez provide the keynote address at the annual World of Wellesley Martin Luther King Breakfast,” World of Wellesley President Michelle Chalmers said in the release. “Yves, a former board member of the World of Wellesley, is an amazing woman who always brought energy and passion to the organization and we couldn't be more thrilled that she accepted the invitation to be a part of this important community event celebrating the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.”
Robbin Chapman, Wellesley College's associate provost and academic director of diversity and inclusion, said her college is thrilled to welcome Salomon-Fernandez.
“Dr. Salomon-Fernandez is a strong, insightful and strategic leader who embodies the ideals that to make positive change in the world we must boldly lead and brilliantly serve," Chapman said in the release. "I can imagine no one more fitting to lead our reflections on the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. She has been a force for elevating STEM education and career opportunities for MassBay students, and creating strong MassBay partnerships with the town of Wellesley and other surrounding communities. Finding new ways we may connect with one another was one of Dr. King's lessons for us all and President Salomon-Fernandez has put that philosophy into actions that benefit us all. President Bottomly, the Wellesley College community, and I thank President Salomon-Fernandez for sharing her vision, her insights, and her reflections on the life of Dr. King.”