Chester, Pa. – The third annual Courage Day will take place Thursday, April 11 at Widener University. This year, the university will have a special guest speaker for the event when it welcomes former Air Force fighter pilot Maj. Heather “Lucky” Penney, Widener’s Beideman Visiting Scholar, for a talk on courage and her experience on Sept. 11, 2001.

Courage Day was conceived of and organized by student leaders in collaboration with the university’s Oskin Leadership Institute, which seeks to inspire students to be strategic leaders and responsible citizens who possess the character, courage and competencies to affect positive change throughout the world.

Penney, who is best known for the incredible courage she displayed in the skies on Sept. 11, 2001, will speak about courage at 12:30 p.m. in Alumni Auditorium on campus. Her talk is free and open to the public.

Penney will share how we can choose to practice and cultivate the qualities that enable us all to take courageous action, and she will share her conceptual model of courage and how we can choose to practice and cultivate the qualities that enable us all to be courageous – and connect with the hero that we all are inside.

In addition, student organizers will place hundreds of Courage Day signs across campus lawns that morning, and challenge the university community throughout the day to complete the statement, “I need to find the courage to…” on papers they can attach to large “courage walls” erected on campus for the day. Students who make a written “courage pledge” will walk across the Alumni Auditorium stage after Penney speaks, to receive a courage button.