Campus Life

Student Programming Association to present Bryan Stevenson on March 20

Bryan Steveson is an acclaimed public-interest lawyer, award-winning author, and the founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama.  Credit: ProvidedAll Rights Reserved.

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The Penn State Student Programming Association Lectures Committee, in collaboration with the Rock Ethics Institute, will present a free lecture by Bryan Stevenson at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, March 20, in Eisenhower Auditorium. The lecture is part of SPA’s Distinguished Speaker Series. 

Stevenson is an award-winning author and lawyer who wrote the New York Times best-seller "Just Mercy." He also is a leading voice for civil rights and criminal justice reform, which will be incorporated into his lecture. Stevenson will discuss justice, whether it’s in a classroom setting or not, as well as racial violence and oppression in the United States.

Stevenson is the founder and director of the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama. Under his leadership, EJI has won major legal challenges eliminating excessive and unfair sentencing, exonerating innocent death row prisoners, confronting abuse of the incarcerated and the mentally ill, and aiding children prosecuted as adults. Stevenson has successfully argued several cases before the United States Supreme Court and recently won an historic ruling that mandatory life-without-parole sentences for children age 17 or younger are unconstitutional. He also is a professor of law at New York University School of Law.

The lecture is free to the public but a ticket is needed to attend. Tickets will be available for Penn State students to pick up starting Monday, Feb. 25, in the SPA office (226 HUB-Robeson Center), Eisenhower Auditorium, the Bryce Jordan Center, and the Penn State Downtown Theatre. Non-Penn State students also can attend; tickets for those without a valid Penn State student photo ID will be available starting Monday, March 4.  

In addition to the Student Programming Association and the Rock Ethics Institute, this event is sponsored by the Office of the Vice Provost for Educational Equity; Penn State World Campus; McCourtney Institute for Democracy; Penn State Law; Adult Learner Programs and Services; and the Center for Character, Conscience, and Public Purpose.

About the Student Programming Association 

The Student Programming Association (SPA) exists to serve the Penn State student body by providing diverse activities, programming assistance and resources that enhance a student’s overall co-curricular experience.

SPA prides itself on recommending programs for the benefits of undergraduates, graduates, and returning students and secondarily for others in the University community. The Student Programming Association attempts to enhance the educational, social, cultural and recreational experiences at Penn State; promote outreach and collaboration of student organizations that will foster leadership and organizational development; recognize diverse backgrounds of students; and provide a slate of programming that reflects and celebrates our similarities and differences.

To learn more about the Student Programming Association, visit

Last Updated June 02, 2021