Grand Valley Magazine - (Page 16)

CARRIES DISCUSSIONS BEYOND CLASSROOM by Michele Coffill | photos by Bernadine Carey-Tucker Think of it as an intimate book club with thousands of members. Each year for nearly the past decade, the campus community has read, discussed and studied one book. Book club meetings conclude with a bonus when the author visits West Michigan for presentations. (Few club members dare miss that meeting.) Grand Valley's Community Reading Project was established in 2005 to expand the common reading program used by Housing and Residence Life into a university-wide program. Having a common read is not unusual for a campus or community, and it is a charge that the book selection committee takes very seriously. Brian Jbara, director of Integrative Learning and Advising, said the process of selecting a CRP book begins in the fall after soliciting suggestions from the campus community. "We received 100-plus suggestions last year," Jbara said. 16 Spring '14 He and other committee members divide suggestions into themes, and are always mindful of the CRP's criteria when selecting a book. Standards include choosing a book with wide appeal, one that resonates with Grand Valley's mission and offers a moral or humanistic vision. Jbara and others on the book selection committee are well aware that one title is not going to satisfy all the readers in the campus community. "We know we've picked another memoir with this book," Jbara said, referring to The Distance Between Us. "Faculty members have said that nonfiction works tend to offer lessons and a deeper sense of learning." Suggestions for future books are welcome; send an email to Jbara added that it's a good thing when a book creates discussions or debates. This year's book was no exception as it touches on immigration, domestic violence and substance abuse.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Grand Valley Magazine

Table of Contents
Campus News
Donor Impact
Art of the Possible
One Book Carries Discussions Beyond Classroom
One Million Hours
Power Trio Turns Ideas Into Companies
Q&A Renee Freeman
Off the Path
Focal Point
Alumni News

Grand Valley Magazine