Join us for our next Human Library Event

Susquehanna University, in partnership with the Greater Susquehanna Valley United Way, hosts Human Library story sharing. These stories help combat stereotypes, promote empathy and allow you and other participants to exchange ideas through positive, constructive conversations. You can be a storyteller or a listener, and either way this experience will change you.  

Past Stories:

Childhood Abuse Survivor With PTSD

While most individuals will experience some type of trauma in their lives, Erin Rhinehart experienced sustained, dramatic childhood trauma resulting in severe depression and PTSD. Because of her history, she has often felt anxious, worthless and like an impostor, especially in professional academic settings. While she still has daily struggles with depression and PTSD, she has developed coping strategies that have allowed her to become a successful Neuroscientist and mother of 4. Her story is one of perseverance, determination and achievement. - Erin Rhinehart






Resiliency In Chronic Illness

I have multiple chronic illnesses such as IBS, endometriosis, and PMDD that have changed my life dramatically, and have had to acclimate to life in such a way solely to accommodate them. There have been bad days, and not so bad days, but altogether has made me a more courageous and outspoken woman about my experiences. I am very active on my college campus, and sometimes my illnesses can interfere with how enthusiastic or involved I am on a certain day. I have had to teach myself that with my illnesses, though it can be an outward struggle, does not define me or my work ethic, and makes me want to try harder and be stronger to be who I want to be. - Sarah Marino








Global Citizen And Teacher

How did I go from being a first-generation college student in small-town America, to global citizen living and teaching around the world? In short, it’s a long story. From Oregon, to France, to Italy, to China, to the US East Coast, to West Africa and finally to Selinsgrove, teaching and living around the world has taught this small town girl just how similar we all are in our differences. I love to share about my journey, my travels, and what they’ve taught me! - Shane Sanders






Coming To America

I came as an exchange student from England, went home finished college and immediately moved back here. I had no job, no idea where I’d even live but I had some friends and they had some couches and…… - Anne Smith












Politics And Queerness: Growing Up In Gay In A Historically Red Community

Identifying in the LGBTQ+ community in an area that is historically extremely conservative shaped how I viewed myself and others for years. Even though I was far more liberal than most of the people around me, I would have been at best considered a moderate in the rest of the US. I argued against multiple parts of the LGBTQ+ community, argued against gender identities, against any labels other than the original LGBT. Yet, in becoming more and more involved in politics and gathering a greater understanding of the world around me, I came to realize that these actions hurt people and its not my place to say someone is not valid in their identities. I grew out of being someone who was hateful and judgmental, and if I can over the course of just a few years, others can as well. - Carrigan Honeyfield




From SU To Broadway And Beyond

A Susquehanna University piano major (’81) finds her way to New York City, playing in Broadway pit orchestras and touring the world for nearly 30 years. Find out what her journey was like and how she is re-inventing herself while the theater industry is shut down. - Nancy Wolfe







Life From 4 Feet And 2 Wheels

Life is such an amazing opportunity. I live life with Cerebral Palsy. I find it as a great blessing. I believe in solution based positive thinking. If I have trouble reaching something I reach for a grabber to grab it. I wanted to graduate college so I met with every professor I could, and talked reasonable accommodations. I graduated in four years from Susquehanna University with honors in 2006 with a BA in Political Science. My life is full of solutions, and funny lessons learned from attempted solutions that I would be happy to share with you! - Brian Habermehl



Chronic Pain And Chronic Resilience

At 15 years old, I woke up with chronic pain that I’ve experienced constantly ever since. Because of this, I was out of high school and isolated for several years. Now, trying to become a teacher, every day is a battle against my own body and the expectations of the people who don’t believe that I can handle the life that I’ve always dreamed of. - Joanna Messineo




Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow

While growing up in rural south central Pennsylvania, I endured a horrific childhood thanks to my raging alcoholic/mentally ill mother and the verbally abusive grandmother who raised me. An awkward and precocious teenager, I was an outcast with no friends, who hid in the bathroom to avoid the embarrassment of no one wanting me to sit at their table in the high school cafeteria. During my 18th summer, I watched as my mother was carried out of my former home in a body bag, after she died face down on our living room floor - the result of an overdose and end stage cirrhosis of the liver. One month later, anxious, grieving and extremely lacking in self worth, I escaped my own personal Hell; and as the first person in my family to go to college started undergrad two hours from home. Fast forward two decades: this week I celebrated my 42nd birthday in Dubai, as a self-made millionaire and philanthropist thanks to my successful real estate rental business and 13 years working in the Middle East. I’ve travelled to 52 countries (and counting),and I can’t remember the last time I’ve lacked a lunch date. I’d like to highlight my journey - which has been chock full of tragedies, triumphs, and adventures - to motivate and inspire others who might believe their origin determines their destination. - Bridget Bailey