Office of Student Life

Student Activities

MLK Jr. Day of Service

Join over 1,000 Buckeyes in honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and make Monday, January 18, 2021 a day on instead of a day off. Come connect with your fellow Buckeyes and engage in service with the greater Columbus community. We look forward to serving with you!

This year's Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. day of service will be a completely virtual experience! Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: Continuing the Legacy will be a week long program that will celebrate his legacy while incorporating the importance of activism in our society today. Pay It Forward will be collaborating with the Hale Black Cultural Center, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, the Office of Social Change, and more! See below for a full list of events. Attending these programs will enter you into a raffle for a $15 BuckID cash card!

Schedule of Events

  • Monday, January 18th, 2021 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM: Continuing The Legacy: MLK Week Opening Ceremony
    • Join us for our virtual Opening Ceremony of MLK Week! In collaboration with the Hale Black Cultural Center, we have curated performances that will honor the legacy of Dr. King. Special appearances will be made by Dr. Melissa Shivers and Lawrence Williamson!  
    • Missed the opening ceremony? Relive the experience HERE!


  • Tuesday, January 19th, 2021 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM: 40 Acres and a Mule: Wealth, Legacy and Social Change
    • Collaboration with the Office of Social Change
    • This session will explore the "legacy" of wealth in America and its economic and racial implications. Hosts will discuss the importance of generational wealth as it relates to Social Justice and Social Change. The panel will dissect the broken promise of "40 Acres and a Mule" and will discuss wealth strategies and tips. The intent is to encourage community stability, economic empowerment, and FREEDOM.
    • The week of January 18th, The Office of Student Life; Social Change Department will construct "grow kits". These "grow kits" are a component of the SL; Social Change "Cultivating Social Change" project which equips high need families with portable garden kits.These kits include soil, seed, multicultural books, and activity sheets. The goal is to complete 100 kits and prepare them for distribution. To volunteer, please visit COVID-19 protocols apply and volunteers will work in small groups.
    • Missed this session? Watch the recording here.


  • Wednesday, January 20th, 2021 7:30 PM - 8:30 PM: The Letter from Birmingham Jail: Applications to Modern Day Advocacy and Activism


  • Thursday, January 21st, 2021  7:30 PM - 8:30 PM: Fifty Years of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at The Ohio State University:  A Discussion with ODI Leaders
    • Collaboration with the Office of Diversity and Inclusion
    • Join Pay It Forward in a panel discussion with prominent diversity and inclusion leaders at Ohio State. Panelists include: James Moore III, Vice Provost for Diversity and Inclusion, Chief Diversity Officer, Mr. Lawrence Williamson, Director of the Hale Black Cultural Center and Ms. Kimberly McCalla, Director for External Engagement, Alumni Affairs, and Special Events. Join us for a chance to ask these essential leaders about their roles as it relates to diversity, inclusion, and social justice!
    • Missed this session? Watch the recording here.


At-Home Service Kits

This year, we are offering the opportunity for students to participate in service from the comfort and safety of their own homes and residence halls! We have partnered with three local agencies and organizations to bring at-home service kits to life: Fresh Start, Westside Free Store, and My Very Own Blanket. Learn more about these agencies below! Each service kit is designed for 1-2 individuals to complete (by yourself or with a roommate). The kits will either be putting together hygiene kits or making tie-blankets for foster children. Pay It Forward is providing 150 at-home service kits, and they will be distributed on a first come, first served basis. Sign-ups will occur via a Microsoft Form which will open after our virtual Opening Ceremony event on Monday, January 18th. You may only request one at-home service kit. If you are wanting members of a student organization to participate, they will each need to sign up for a kit. 

Get a free set of winter hat and gloves for yourself if you participate in the at-home service kit!

  • Instructions and timeline:
    • Sign up for an at-home service kit starting Monday, January 18th at 7:00 PM after the Opening Ceremony
    • Pick up your at-home service kit starting Monday, January 25th at the Ohio Union. **You must pick up your kit during the following times.
      • Monday, January 25th 2:00-4:00pm in Traditions Room
      • Tuesday, January 26th 2:00-4:00pm in Creative Arts Room
      • Wednesday, January 27th 4:00-6:00pm in Creative Arts Room
      • Friday, January 29th 11:00am-1:00pm in Traditions Room
    • Complete your at-home service kit! Instructions will be included in the kit.
    • Return your completed materials to the Ohio Union Info desk by Friday, February 12th, 2021. (If you are putting together hygiene kits, please make sure your Ziploc bags are labeled with the correct agency)

**Only 150 at-home service kits are available and we have reached that capacity. Please sign-up for the waitlist at the link below. If a student does not pick up their service kit, we will contact those on the waitlist.


Fresh Start

Fresh Start is a local community service based organization and nonprofit that focuses on providing hygiene products for the homeless through their GoBags. Their main focus is to raise funds to purchase essential hygiene products in order to create GoBags for the homeless community in the Columbus Area. Fresh Start believes that personal hygiene is the foundation for success, especially when it comes to job interviews and interpersonal relationships. They believe that by providing basic hygiene products, they would be giving those in need a chance at a Fresh Start. 

My Very Own Blanket 

Since 1999, My Very Own Blanket has been dedicated to helping children in foster care feel valued and comforted by providing a personalized blanket with the child’s name, that warms the heart of every child. These blankets are important to the children because not only do they get a feeling of comfort and joy, but they also get a feeling of security as the blankets are comforting and familiar and the children can take them from one home to another. 

Westside Free Store Ministries 

The Westside Free Store Ministries is a faith based, 501(c)(3) charitable organization founded to share resources, build relationships and create community on Columbus’ west side. Through the help of volunteer efforts and the generosity of many people, the Westside Free Store serves thousands of people in need each year. Since 2004, the West Side Free Store has been a hospitable community resource that serves lunches on Saturday’s and hygiene kits, clothes and small household items several days a week. 



Please email Pay It Forward at