Melissa Harris-Perry is the distinguished speaker at MSU Denver tomorrow

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Melissa Harris-Perry, a leader in women studies, will be the distinguished speaker at an event hosted by the Institute for Women's Studies and Services and the Rachel B. Noel Committee at Metropolitan State University of Denver's Physical Education Event Center from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. tomorrow. The appearance was originally scheduled for the Tivoli Turnhalle, but since 800 guests are expected to show, it was moved to a spot with more space.

See also: MSU Denver lives up to its name

Harris-Perry is a host of MSNBC's Melissa Harris-Perry, which airs from 10 a.m. to noon MST on weekends. She's also a prominent political science professor at Tulane University, as well as founder of the Ana Julia Cooper Project on Gender, Race and Politics at the university. She's also the author of Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes and Black Women in America, a textbook used at Yale University, and the award-winning Barbershops, Barbers and BET: Everyday Talk and Black Political Thought.

Her goal is to focus on civic engagement and service-learning, which means she uses the classroom to portray democratic deliberation. "We always have an African-American female speaker come to talk about a topic of their choice or about their own life journey," explains Arlene Sgoutas, associate professor of the Institute for Women's Studies and Services at MSU Denver. "To inspire our own students to finish their education and see themselves more than maybe the world sees them"

After Harris-Perry's talk at Metro, there will be a book signing. Tomorrow evening, the Shorter Community African Methodist Episcopal Church, 3100 Richard Allen Court in Denver, will host a reception for the event. There will also be an award ceremony.

The Rachel B. Noel Distinguished Visiting Professorship was started in 1981 to encourage diversity at what was then Metropolitan State College; it links Black History Month with Women's History Month.

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