PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State University students, faculty and staff and local community members can renew their commitment against hate and violence and for diversity at the Second Annual Diversity Celebration, this year set for Sept. 24.

The highlight event begins at 4 p.m. with an opening reception with complimentary food, refreshments and entertainment at Beasley Performing Arts Coliseum.

There also will be an opportunity for everyone to sign the Diversity Pledge, essentially a declaration “against hate and violence in support of diversity.”

President V. Lane Rawlins will discuss the university’s diversity and campus climate in a keynote address at 5 p.m. and various university officials, including Francesca Delgado, the Associate Students of WSU’s director of multicultural awareness, and Wayne Valrey Jung, president of the Council of Multicultural Student Presidents, will give special remarks.

“We invite the entire Palouse region to join this celebration and pledge their commitment against hate and violence,” said Milton Lang, special assistant to the president and chair of the organizing committee.

Persons, too, can sign the pledge before the event online at a Web site: www.diversity.wsu.edu.

Following the program, “American Voices,” will begin in the coliseum at 5:30 p.m. The free performance details stories based on the lives and recollections of a diverse set of Americans. Critics and audiences have given the show outstanding reviews.

According to Lang, the Second Annual Diversity Celebration is an event in which new and returning students, administrators, faculty, and staff as well as community members can join together and express their personal commitment to do their part to make this a safe and thriving community for its members and ride this community of violence, racism, and intolerance of any kind.

The Office of the President is sponsoring the event, part of recommendations made in 2001 by the Council on Campus Climate. The group felt that there needed to be a forum in which the campus and Pullman community could come together and address the issue of intolerance towards people based on their sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, gender, religion, age or disability.

The event’s purpose is to educate the community about prejudice and violence that occur on campus and in the community at large. The event also will highlight the different resources on campus and the special programs planned for the upcoming academic year.

For more information, contact Lang at 509/335-5506.