UB Distinguished Speakers Talk by Columnist Steve Lopez Will Be Complemented by WNY Community Resource Fair

Release Date: October 22, 2009 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- When writer Steve Lopez, whose columns for the Los Angeles Times were the basis for a hit film and a bestselling book about homelessness, mental illness and the redemptive power of music, presents the Oct. 28 Distinguished Speaker Lecture at the University at Buffalo, he will be surrounded by community workers whose work he knows and appreciates.

Beginning at 6:30 p.m. and again immediately following Lopez's 8 p.m. talk in UB's Alumni Arena, UB will host a Community Resource and Engagement Fair on the first floor of Alumni Arena, which will focus on services available to the homeless and to people who face mental health issues.

The public is invited to visit the fair and talk with vendors to learn about ways to help such individuals in our community and about the programs and services available to them. Also, UB Human Resources: CORE (Community Outreach for Employees) will conduct a canned goods drive at the fair. Donations will benefit the Buffalo City Mission and Friends of the Night People.

Lopez, subject of the film and author of the book "The Soloist," is the 2009 UB Reads selection author. As part of the UB Reads program, Student Affairs distributed more than 5,000 copies of "The Soloist" to UB students, faculty and staff. The book is based on a series of columns that Lopez wrote about his friendship with homeless musician Nathaniel Ayers, a once promising student at Julliard.

The UB Distinguished Speakers Series sponsors include the Don Davis Auto World Lectureship Fund, the UB Undergraduate and Graduate Student Associations, the University Bookstore, WGRZ-TV and WBFO 88.7. UB Student Affairs is the lecture sponsor for the Lopez event.

About 4,000 people are expected to be in attendance at the lecture, including more than 2,500 students from UB and area high schools. Free lecture tickets are available for UB undergraduates (in 350 Student Union) and graduate students (in 310 Student Union), one ticket per student, UB ID required.

UB faculty and staff can obtain discount vouchers provided by series sponsors United University Professions and TIAA-CREF at http://www.specialevents.buffalo.edu/tickets.

Fair participants include the Buffalo City Mission, Child and Adolescent Treatment Services, Child & Family Services, Compass House, Crisis Services: Outreach to the Homeless Services, Friends of the Night People, Habitat for Humanity, Homeless Alliance of Western New York, Lake Shore Behavioral Health, the Mental Health Association of Erie County, Inc., Mid-Erie Counseling & Treatment Services, Neighborhood Legal Services, Inc., United Way of Buffalo and Erie County and, at UB, Alpha Phi Omega, Circle K, Community Action Corps, UB Counseling Services/ Health & Wellness, and Human Resources; CORE/Work Life Balance.

More information is available at http://www.specialevents.buffalo.edu.

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