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Joe Postwaite Speaks at NAACP Event for MLK Day

Joe Postwaite Speaks at NAACP Event for MLK Day

By Tyler Stotsky

Senior Joe Postwaite participated in a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. tribute event on Monday January 19th that was put on the National Association of the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) for Dr. Martin Luther King Day. The event was held at Lakeland Community College. 

Postwaite was one of the two keynote speakers for the event, which focused on the theme of "Not Yet a Reality." The program also featured gospel choirs from Riverside and Harvey High Schools and an audience of elected officials, high school students, parents, and NAACP members. 

The New York native and Education major, spoke about the importance of the education system and how students should further their education. "Together, anything can be accomplished and that we must push each other to become the better version of ourselves." 

Postwaite linked his education career to his speech. "Being an African American student with an IEP (Individual Education Plan), school has never been easy for me. I have struggled through what people would consider to be an easy class. My difficulty with school was never retaining the information, but the ability to test my comprehension seemed impossible at times." 

He has overcome that obstacle to put himself in a position to graduate this May.

Postwaite went on to say, "Most importantly, I wanted everyone to know that it is okay to fail and if it happens, it is what occurs afterwards that expresses your character." 

"I can truly say that it was a great experience for me. I certainly enjoyed inspiring the audience, but more importantly the students, I was reassured of my impact when one of the students from the choir came up to me and thanked me for my message, he said that he needed to hear my message and that what I said meant a lot to him. Above all, to change one life, is to change the world," said Postwaite after the event. 

Postwaite has accomplished many accomplishments over his career at Lake Erie. Postwaite has won four GLIAC titles across the indoor and outdoor seasons in long jump and triple jump. 

Postwaite has appeared at the NCAA Championships in five events and has won All-American honors four times, including a second-place effort at the 2014 NCAA Indoor Championships. 

He was named Freshman GLIAC Freshman Field Athlete of the Year, GLIAC Co-Regional Athlete of the Year and USTFCCCA Regional Field Athlete of the Year, along with three USTFCCCA All-Region Honors in his first three years at Lake Erie.