“The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice,” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once observed.
In her commencement speech to the College of Justice and Safety at Eastern Kentucky University on May 11, Hannah Lembright agreed with former president Barack Obama that “we are the ones who must do the bending.”
Lembright, who graduated with a double major in social justice and Spanish, recounted the opportunities she found at EKU to do just that. Most notably, she interned at Kentucky Refugee Ministries, where she helped reunite refugee families, watched immigrants become citizens and sought protection for victims of domestic violence. “In situations such as these, we are the agents of justice,” she said. “The College of Justice and Safety has adequately prepared us for situations that will arise in our field, and I believe we have our professors to thank for that.”
The native of Fort Thomas, Kentucky, expressed her gratitude to have studied under such accomplished professionals in her field. “Many of these professors are known across the country for their work in their field and their writing,” she said. “Other students are reading the textbooks that our professors write, but we get to have their insight firsthand.”
Not only were the EKU Justice and Safety faculty exceptionally knowledgeable, but according to Lembright, were also exceptionally attentive instructors: “They made themselves available for both important conversations and casual ones. They made it clear they genuinely care for our desire to learn and grow.”
Though her time at EKU has come to a close, Lembright plans to carry the Colonel legacy wherever she goes. “It is my goal,” she declared, “that as alumni of EKU’s College of Justice & Safety we will be known as those who safeguard lives, ensure public safety and mobilize for change.” This fall, she will carry it to Spain for nine months to teach English.
— By Madison Harris, student writer, EKU Communications & Brand Management