When the 10-day anniversary bus trip took off on May 6, to retrace the 1961 Freedom Ride from Washington, D.C. to Jackson, Mississippi, two local students were among the 40 college students chosen to accompany the original Freedom Riders, who risked their lives to bring attention to their cause.
The 2011 Student Freedom Ride is the centerpiece of a major outreach campaign leading up to the May 16, PBS American Experience broadcast of Stanley Nelson’s acclaimed film FREEDOM RIDERS, the powerful and inspirational story of the more than 400 black and white men and women who, using nonviolent tactics, challenged segregated facilities in the South in 1961. This ride is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for college students committed to learning from history and applying those lessons today, the ride is also a catalyst for a national conversation about the role of civic engagement today.
The Milwaukee students, who were selected to take the honor ride, are Maricela Aguilar of Marquette University’s Klingler College of Arts and Sciences, Class of 2012, whose major is political science and English literature. The second student is Alicia Skeeter of the University of Wisconsin—Milwaukee, Class of 2013, whose major is education policy and community studies. Both women are from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Their journey can be followed at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/freedomriders/2011/meet-the-riders/.