“A man who said yes to life”: Wes Moore Thrills at Brookhaven College

9780385528207Wes Moore, author of The Other Wes Moore, recently spoke at Brookhaven College as part of their 2014 Common Reading program.  Nearly 700 students from Brookhaven and the surrounding Dallas County Community College Districts gathered in the school’s Performance Hall to hear Mr. Moore speak.  Introduced by Brookhaven English professor Hazel Carlos as “a man who said yes to life, who rebelled … who begged to be left to his own devices but could not because too many people had planned, sacrificed and lived for him,” Moore emphasized the importance of education, mentorship, service and social responsibility.  “The point of higher education,” Moore told the crowd, “is to understand what becomes all of our roles.”  The crowd erupted with applause as Moore’s talk concluded by speaking specifically to his support of community colleges.

The Other Wes Moore, named a 2011 Booklist Top 10 Black History Nonfiction Book and winner of the 2011 BCALA (Black Caucus of ALA) Literary Award for Nonfiction, has been selected for common reading at nearly thirty colleges and universities.

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Dave Eggers will discuss The Circle and Meet Students on College Campuses This Fall

The CircleAs the internet and social media continue to influence a large part of our daily lives it’s no wonder that The Circle has caught the attention of many colleges and universities.  In his newest novel, Dave Eggers, author of Zeitoun and A Hologram for the King explores what happens when the benefits of technology exact a dangerous price on humanity.

“[A] novel of ideas . . . about the social construction and deconstruction of privacy, and about the increasing corporate ownership of privacy, and about the effects such ownership may have on the nature of Western democracy.” —Margaret AtwoodThe New York Review of Books

Three universities have selected The Circle as their 2014 Common Read and are looking forward having their students discuss these ideas during orientation and further into the fall semester. Dave Eggers will visit each of these campuses to meet students and discuss their reactions to The Circle.

University of South Carolina, Columbia (Monday Aug 18th)

Virginia Commonwealth University (Tuesday Aug 19th)

Boston College (Thursday Sept 11th and Friday Sept 12th)

Dave is excited to connect with students and would like to visit even more campuses this fall! If your school is considering The Circle for Common Reading, please contact us at acmart@randomhouse.com to find out more information on Dave’s speaking availability.

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Fort Lewis College Selects Dead Man Walking for their 2014 Common Read

Dead Man WalkingWhen the incoming Freshman class at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado arrive on campus in Fall 2014, they will begin to read and study Sister Helen Prejean’s Dead Man Walking in different courses throughout the Fall semester. Sister Prejean’s memoir takes readers inside the United States’ death penalty system where she became the spiritual adviser to Patrick Sonnier, a man convicted of the murder of two teenagers and sentenced to die in the electric chair of Louisiana’s Angola State Prison. Prejean’s moving narrative takes a critical eye to our death penalty system and asks how can a society benefit from replicating the violence it condemns.

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My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School

9780345511010By Carlotta Walls Lanier, on why she wrote A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School (One World, July 2010).

I started this book in earnest in January of 2006. I had in mind the upcoming 50th anniversary of our entry into Little Rock’s Central High School. This September 2007 event might have been the impetus, but it wasn’t the reason. (Besides, I sort of missed that deadline by a couple of years!)

As I say in the book, I didn’t talk much about my experiences until the late 1980s, after our 30th anniversary, when the nine of us were all together again in Little Rock and Bill Clinton was governor of the state. In the years that followed, Melba told her story in Warriors Don’t Cry. Ernie had a movie about his experience, The Ernie Green Story. Mrs. Huckaby, the assistant principal, told her story, which was made into a movie called Crisis at Little Rock. Back in the 1960s, Mrs. Bates had told her story in The Long Shadow of Little Rock. Continue reading

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“Sincere, inspiring, and wonderfully human”: Boston College on Colum McCann’s Convocation Address

59846_mccann_colum[2]The following piece was written by Rev. Joseph P. Marchese, Boston College’s Director of First-Year Experience in support of Colum McCann and his novel Let The Great World Spin: A Novel (Random House Trade Paperbacks, November 2009):

In September 2011, Boston College hosted author Colum McCann and featured his novel Let the Great World Spin at the University’s First Year Academic Convocation.  This event is a rich tradition at Boston College, assembling the freshmen class in its totality for the first time, and tasking students with the charge to “Go, set the world aflame!” in the spirit of Saint Ignatius Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus.  Convocation speakers have featured authors, politicians, and other leaders including Dr. Paul Farmer, Tracy Kidder, Senator John McCain, Jeanette Walls, Ann Patchett, Bill Strickland, and in 2005, then Senator of Illinois, Barack Obama. Continue reading

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What Happens When Disaster Strikes? A Message from Sheri Fink

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????By Sheri Fink, author of Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-Ravaged Hospital (Crown, September 2013).

Memorial Medical was surrounded by floodwaters after the levees failed in New Orleans in 2005, drowning one of America’s great cities. Within hours, all power would fail. The heat rose. Rescue helicopters began arriving. They transported one or two patients at a time, but there were around 250 patients and 2,000 staff and family members. Who should be rescued first? Continue reading

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A Life Lesson for Every Student

THINK with borderBy Guy P. Harrison, author of Think: Why You Should Question Everything (Prometheus Books, 2013).

Students in their first year of college are experiencing a pivotal time in their lives: for the first time they are on their own, making decisions with real implications and seeing their world expand exponentially. Unfortunately, most institutions do not teach courses devoted to critical thinking, and even fewer make them required of students to graduate, despite the fact that critical thinking and logic are applicable to every discipline and are skills that students can use for a lifetime. Our students need to be armed with excellent critical thinking skills, and Think is just the book to teach them. Continue reading

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