Wheelock Community Read: What Book Should We Read This Year?

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We have some big news about our (former) Summer Reading program. We’ve changed our name! Our yearly common reading experience will now be known as the Wheelock Community Read (#wheeread) to reflect our goal to involve the entire community more deeply as well as the fact that our book discussions extend beyond the summer.

Our yearly common reading experience will now be known as the Wheelock Community Read to reflect our goal to involve the entire community more deeply as well as the fact that our book discussions extend beyond the summer.

And we want everyone’s help! This year, the committee has chosen four books as finalists, and we are offering all students, faculty, staff, and administrators the opportunity to vote for the book they think will make the best choice. We invite everyone to consider the following titles:

  • The Beautiful Struggle by Ta-Nehisi Coates
  • Before You Suffocate Your Own Fool Self by Danielle Evans
  • Strangers Drowning by Larissa MacFarquar
  • Becoming Nicole by Amy Ellis Nutt

(Current students, faculty, and staff should look for a Survey Monkey link in their Wheelock email inbox.)

The purpose of the program is to provide a significant shared experience for our community, to reinforce Wheelock’s mission, and to help incoming first-year students make the transition to the more analytical thinking required in college classes. In keeping with these goals, the committee looks for selections each year that reflect Wheelock’s mission, creating opportunities for rich discussion among all members of our community. We also seek books that will intellectually challenge us while also tying in to the exciting, transformative experience of a Wheelock education.

The selected book will be distributed to incoming, new students over the summer. Books will also be available for all to purchase in our bookstore during the final weeks of the semester, and book discussion opportunities will occur in June for faculty and staff and in September for all students.

Undergraduate and graduate students: Are you interested in becoming a Community Read Ambassador? Community Read Ambassadors will help plan community events that promote reading as well as awareness of the selected book, and they will have the opportunity to join the selection committee next year. Email Jenne Powers (jpowers@wheelock.edu) if you’re interested.

Everyone: Look for an earlier process next year. We hope to select a book in the fall and offer discussions and other public events throughout 2017. If you have ideas for future book selections, email Jenne at any time.

Happy reading!

Jenne_Powers_FacultyJenne Powers teaches writing and literature courses at Wheelock. Her regular course offerings include Principles of Writing and Reading, Critical Writing and Reading, Writing as Social Action, and a first-year seminar course in Russian literature. In the Writing Center, she hires, trains, and supports undergraduate and graduate writing consultants who provide drop-in support to all students at every stage of the writing process. Her research interests include composition pedagogy and the teaching of critical thinking.