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Snow convocation civil rights advocate addresses students

Jacqueline Thompson, a retired educator highly involved in equity in education, spoke and performed at Snow College’s Convocation on Thursday, Jan. 11.

Snow convocation civil rights

advocate addresses students

 

By Robert Stevens

Managing editor

Jan. 18, 2018

 

EPHRAIM—As part of Snow College’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day commemoration on Thursday, Jan. 11, the school invited decorated civil rights and educational equity figure Jacqueline Thompson to speak as part of the school’s Convocation series.

Thompson has spent her life fighting for civil justice and for equity in the educational system.

During the Convocation, Thompson performed an interpretative dance to a rendition of the influential classic folk song “Eyes on the Prize.”

She also performed a monologue, spoken from the perspective of Rosa Parks, the woman who ignited a civil rights protest by refusing to give up her seat on a bus.

The monologue held some contradictions to messages told about Parks in some history books and was delivered in a candid and casual manner.

At one point in the monologue, Thompson’s portrayal of Parks said the books written about her said her feet were tired, but that wasn’t true. Parks just didn’t feel like giving up that seat.

The message Thompson clearly emphasized was, “Our commonality brings us closer together, and our diversity enriches us.”

The Convocation also included a tribute to King produced by students from West Lake High School.

Set to a beat made famous by Dre Dre’s 1999 “Next Episode” album track, the tribute was a striking combination of hip-hop, social narrative and messages of civil justice, along with powerful images of civil rights conflicts and milestones experienced by King and his followers during the civil rights movement in the 1960s.

Thompson was raised in Nashville, Tenn., the oldest of nine children born to retired Sgt. David Royston and Margie Royston. She graduated from high school in 1974, earned a bachelor’s degree in 1978, received her master’s degree in 1997 and received her doctorate degree from Utah State University in 2010.

Thompson recently retired from Davis School District and is married to Edward Thompson, a supervisor at Hill Air Force Base in Ogden.