LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The Arkansas Martin Luther King Junior Commission celebrated 30 years Wednesday morning.

Students from across the state honored the social justice leader’s legacy through education, unity, and service. The sounds and themes filled the hearts of a crowd celebrating something older than most of them.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was killed 55 years ago but left a timeless message of love, tolerance, and nonviolence.

Bale Elementary fifth grader Karmen Dennis said she learned the importance of leadership and public service and gained advice she’ll carry with her.

“You should love yourself. You should never doubt yourself about things,” she recalled.

Behind each blossoming student, a teacher, holding roses hand delivered by kids at the MLK Commission’s request. Bale Elementary teacher Melvin Campbell received his rose from Dennis.

“For them to say that you really taught them and you’re really making an impact on the youth, that’s very special,” Campbell said.

Some schools like Dermott High School traveled hours to be there. Tironeka Brown teaches business there and received three roses from her students.

“There’s power in unity, and there’s strength in unity, and when we all come together, we can accomplish more,” Brown expressed.

Through band showcases, educational and artistic presentations, and a donation drive for tornado victims, they learned every step can be a step forward.

“Some days might be hard. Some days might be not. That’s why it’s called the present for a reason because it’s a gift,” Dennis said.

As part of the Victory or Violence mission, FOX 16’s Ashlei King was at the celebration emphasizing the importance of mentoring.