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Registration opens Oct. 4 for Civil Rights Pilgrimage

RELEASED: Sept. 22, 2010

graphic for Civil Rights PilgrimageEAU CLAIRE — More than 150 University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire students will spend their 2011 winter or spring breaks on a Civil Rights Pilgrimage, visiting sites of historic importance to the U.S. civil rights movement.

Registration for the winter and spring trips will begin Oct. 4. Registration will continue until all available spots are filled.

The winter trip will run Jan. 7-17, 2011, and the spring break trip is slated for March 18-26, 2011.

Participants will visit the birthplace of Martin Luther King Jr. in Atlanta; the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute in Birmingham, Ala.; the Civil Rights Memorial and the Rosa Parks Museum and Library in Montgomery, Ala.; the National Voting Rights Museum and other sites in Selma, Ala.; Central High School and the William J. Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock, Ark.; and the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tenn.

"The Civil Rights Pilgrimage completely changed the way that I form perspectives about the world," said Sarah Tweedale, a junior sociology major from Richfield. "It provided me with a kind of learning that I hadn't found in the Midwest. Speaking directly with people who were involved in the civil rights movement in the 1950s-70s is invaluable in learning the struggles that others have gone through to get our country to the point at which we're at today. The immersion in the South and opportunity to learn about such a critical time period in United States history is truly the most transformative experience that I've had at UW-Eau Claire."

Students taking the trip also may register for a three-credit travel seminar. "Women's Studies 222" will introduce students to key women activists of the 20th century and the American civil rights movement in which they were involved. The course will focus on the significant contributions of African American women in the fight for civil rights, said Jodi Thesing-Ritter, UW-Eau Claire associate dean of students. In addition to participation in the Civil Rights Pilgrimage, the seminar requires on-campus instruction. For more information about the class and permission to register for it, students must contact the women's studies department.

Students on the pilgrimage also can participate in a faculty-student research project that will be developed by student trip coordinators.

The $350 trip fee includes transportation, lodging and museum admissions. Students can register beginning Oct. 4 in the Dean of Students office, Schofield Hall Room 240. A $75 deposit is required at registration.

The Civil Rights Pilgrimage is partially funded through a gift from the Juedes-Molinaro Family Foundation to the UW-Eau Claire Foundation. The trip also is sponsored by the UW-Eau Claire Dean of Students office and the Blugold Commitment fund.

To read about personal experiences of students on previous trips, go to the Civil Rights Pilgrimage trip blog.

More information can be found online.

For details, contact Jodi Thesing-Ritter at 715-836-2325 or thesinjm@uwec.edu.

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JB/JP

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