It Happened On the Way to War is SUNY, Potsdam’s 2011 Common Book

Iraq veteran Rye Barcott’s memoir, It Happened On the Way to War,  is the 2011 Common Reading book at the State University of New York, Potsdam. In August, the university’s Student Success Center distributed copies of the book to incoming students enrolling in the First-Year Success Seminar (FYSS).

The book will be assigned reading in all sections of FYSS, a college transition course that most new students take in the fall semester. Though sections of the course are based on an array of interdisciplinary topics, appealing to a student body with broad academic interests, the book will be the common thread that links the whole class together.

Students will be asked to consider what lessons might be learned from these two “worlds” of service [military and humanitarian], as well as how they can make an impact on the world as college students.

‘On the Way to War’ Author Speaks to SUNY Potsdam Freshman

The First Year Experience (FYE) program also has a Residential Life component; students enrolled in the same FYSS will live together on the same floor in one of two dorms. This way, freshman students making the transition to university life and academics can “go through it all together” with their peers. Students will also have the support of upperclassmen who live on each FYE floor and serve both as Academic Peer Mentors, providing general academic guidance, and as FYSS Teaching Assistants.

Rye Barcott will visit campus to speak on October 12.

Previously, P.M. Forni’s Choosing Civility was the common book at SUNY, Potsdam. Click here to see all the schools that have adopted these titles and other Popular Picks for first-year reading from Macmillan.

It Happened On the Way to War • Bloomsbury • 352 pages

Roberts Wesleyan College Reads This I Believe

This I Believe: The Personal Philosophies of Remarkable Men and Women is Robert Wesleyan College’s choice for the 2011 campus-wide reading program, Roberts Reads. The book will be assigned reading in all sections of the First-Year Seminar and the Senior Seminar; these two required courses serve as bookends to each student’s academic experience.

Though the program is geared toward first-year and senior students, the whole college is encouraged to participate. Faculty will assign This I Believe in Communication, Education, English, and Liberal Arts courses as well. The Roberts Reads program aims to “challenge students to learn about diverse disciplines . . . to develop essential skills, such as writing, critical thinking; and communication; and to discover countless connections among varied academic disciplines, learning experiences, and faith perspectives.”

The 2010 Roberts Reads title was Picking Cotton: Our Memoir of Injustice and Redemption; Jennifer Thompson-Cannino spoke about advocacy for judicial reform on campus last November. Dan Gediman, public radio veteran and co-editor of two collections of “This I Believe” essays, will visit Roberts Wesleyan to speak this fall.

To see a list of other schools that have adopted This I Believe or the second volume of essays, This I Believe II, as well as other Popular Picks from Macmillan, click here.

This I Believe • Holt Paperbacks • 320 pages