LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Siena College hosted a special guest Tuesday. Martin Luther King III was awarded an honorary doctorate.

The civil rights activist and global humanitarian also gave a speech. His theme was “Strengthening the Bonds of Racial Justice.” The oldest son of Martin Luther King, Jr. talked about the importance of voting rights and the power young people can have at the polls.

He also urged students to have active roles in their communities.

“Please accept the challenge of becoming a peacemaker,” he said. “Do whatever you can to prevent violence and help to create a non-violent society. Everyone can contribute to this cause in some way. There is no country on earth that does not need more healers and peacemakers.”

King’s mother, Coretta Scott King, spoke at Siena College and received an honorary degree in 1986.