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Honoring Our Heroes: Autherine Lucy Foster to Receive Honorary Doctorate From Miles College

Article Date:
Adminstration, Latest News, News and Media

For Immediate Release:
August 14, 2020
Honoring Our Heroes: Autherine Lucy Foster to Receive Honorary Doctorate 
From Miles College
FAIRFIELD, ALABAMA – Miles College will honor Autherine Lucy Foster '52, an alumna and the first African-American to enroll and attend the University of Alabama, with an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters. The invitation-onlyceremony will be held on Wednesday, August 19, 2020, at 11:00 a.m. in the Brown Hall Auditorium. 
"It is with great honor that we award Mrs. Foster with an honorary degree from the same college she graduated decades ago," said Bobbie Knight, President of Miles College. "We recognize and embrace the significant contribution she has made in America's history, and we believe she embodies the true spirit of a Milean. In honoring her with this degree, we are expressing our appreciation, and we are sending a message to our student body that following one's dreams, against all odds, leads to great things," said Knight. 
Foster is a retired educator who became the first African-American student to desegregate the University of Alabama. Born on October 5, 1929, in Shiloh, Alabama, Foster attended Miles College and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in English in 1952. Foster enrolled in the all-white University of Alabama in 1956 but was expelled from the university because threats were made against her life, and riots broke out in resistance to her presence on campus. Years later, the university officially annulled the expulsion, and soon after, Foster enrolled in the graduate program in Education, where she was honored and given a standing ovation when she walked across the stage at graduation.
“Mrs. Autherine Lucy Foster is a living legend and trailblazer. Her courage as a young adult and throughout her life is evidence of faith, tenaciousness and determination. We are all beneficiaries of the sacrifices she made to breakdown racial barriers in education,” said Bishop Theresa Jefferson-Snorton, Chairman, Miles College Board of Trustees 
This event is by invitation-only. Press must RSVP
WHAT: Autherine Lucy Foster to receive an honorary doctorate from Miles College
WHEN: Wednesday, August 19, 2020 -- 11:00 a.m. 
WHERE: Miles College, 5500 Myron Massey Blvd, Fairfield, AL 35064 – Brown Hall Auditorium
WHO:  Autherine Lucy Foster, Miles College President Bobbie Knight, Miles College Board of Trustees, and Invited Guest 
RSVP: Press must RSVP to asutton@miles.edu. Press representatives can begin to arrive at 10:30 a.m.
NOTE: Autherine Lucy Foster will not be doing individual interviews.                               
Miles College, founded in 1898, is a premier liberal arts institution located in metropolitan Birmingham within the corporate limits of the City of Fairfield. The noble founders of the institution saw educated leadership as the paramount need in the black community. Miles, which is fully accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and accredited by Commission on Colleges for the awarding of Baccalaureate Degrees, is the only four-year institution in historic Birmingham, Alabama designated as a member of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU).

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