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Innovative Common Reading Program Gets Shout-Out in New York Times
Common Reading Program Gets Shout-Out in New York Times

July 03, 2017

Susquehanna's common reading program is recognized in a July 2 New York Times story about college summer reading programs for incoming students.

According to the article, about 40 percent of colleges include a discussion of a common reading assignment in orientations for new students prior to the beginning of fall semester. The goal of Susquehanna's Common Reading Program is to create a shared academic experience and point of discussion for first-year students.

New students enrolling at Susquehanna for the 2017-18 academic year were provided a collection of short readings titled Perspectives on Conflict to read over the summer. They will have numerous opportunities to discuss the anthology with their peers and professors during Welcome Week in August.

New York Times reporter Dana Goldstein interviewed Associate Professor of Creative Writing Catherine Dent, director of the Common Reading Program. Goldstein cites Susquehanna's program as unusual because the student body, faculty and staff vote on a university theme each year, which then becomes the subject of the common reading assignment.

This year's theme, conflict, will be discussed throughout the year by students, faculty and staff in and out of the classroom.

The common reading lecture, scheduled for Monday, Oct. 2, at 7:30 p.m. in Weber Chapel Auditorium, will examine what happens when we respond to conflict in the opposite way people expect us to. Speaker Hanna Rosin, journalist and co-host of NPR's Invisibilia, will explain the concept of "noncomplementarity."

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