THE SIXTH EXTINCTION is Villanova University’s 2016 #CommonReading Book! (#FYE16)

The Sixth ExtinctionVillanova University has selected Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction for their 2016 One Book Villanova program.

All incoming first-year students (roughly 2,500 students) will receive a copy of The Sixth Extinction in the mail over the summer. Faculty, staff, and community members are also encouraged to participate in the program, and will be able to purchase copies online through the school’s website, or directly from the Falvey Library Main Desk. Participants are expected to read The Sixth Extinction before arriving on campus in the fall.

The Sixth Extinction will be required reading in many courses, and will also be the focal point of discussion groups.  In addition to these discussion groups, Villanova University will hold public readings and other special events throughout the 2016-2017 academic year to encourage students to explore the book’s major themes. Elizabeth Kolbert will also speak on campus on September 22, 2016. More information on these events is to come.

A committee comprised of faculty, staff, and students from Villanova University selected The Sixth Extinction for the One Book Villanova program. Each year, the committee accepts book nominations online from all members of the University community—faculty, staff, students, parents, and alumni—and then ultimately narrows the list down to several finalists.

The purpose of the One Book Villanova program is to select a book worthy of close reading, discussion, and course adoption. The school will use The Sixth Extinction to stimulate dialogue among all members of the campus community, and to encourage students to engage with their peers and members of the surrounding community. Villanova University’s common reading program is unique because it is a community reading program, not just a first-year student initiative. In addition to students and other members of the University community reading the book, local book clubs and organizations have also become affiliated with this program.

Click here to see other schools that have adopted The Sixth Extinction and here to learn more about Kolbert’s first novel, Field Notes from a CatastropheVisit our Popular Picks page for more common reading options from Macmillan!

The Sixth Extinction • Picador • 336 pages

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THE SIXTH EXTINCTION is Williams College’s 2016 #CommonReading Book! (#FYE16)

The Sixth ExtinctionWilliams College in Massachusetts has selected Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction for their 2016-2017 Williams Reads program!

All incoming students will receive copies of the The Sixth Extinction in the mail over the summer; they are expected to read the book before heading to campus in order to prepare for group discussions. These group discussions—First Days conversations—will take place in September during orientation week, and will allow students to openly engage with the book’s themes, and connect with their new peers.

Beyond the classroom, Elizabeth Kolbert will hold a talk about the book during the 2016-2017 academic year (she is currently the Class of 1946 Environmental Fellow-in-Residence at Williams College). The school will also hold panels, film viewings, and discussions related to The Sixth Extinction, as well as potentially a couple of presentations by environmental experts. A finalized schedule of events is still to come.

To select the 2016 Williams Reads book, the Williams Reads committee accepted suggestions from students, committee members, and previous participants. Over the course of several months, the committee read and reviewed books, beginning with the titles that had multiple recommendations. Last summer, the list was narrowed down to only six titles. According to the committee, The Sixth Extinction was ultimately chosen because it is well-written as well as multidisciplinary, so they believe that the book will resonate with a diverse student body.

The Williams Reads program strives to foster new connections among students, staff, faculty, and community members by exploring diversity through a common reading experience. The program was developed by the school’s Committee on Diversity and Community, and their goal is to select a book that will stimulate community engagement and challenging dialogue. “We look for something different people can talk about,” Leslie Brown, Associate Professor of History and Co-chair of the Williams Reads committee, explained. “We look for books that offer engaging perspectives, something informative and credible, something that will make for lively learning and conversation; something that offers new knowledge or brings unheard perspectives . . . The Sixth Extinction is well-written, and the book has been well received.”

Click here to see other schools that have adopted The Sixth Extinction, and here to learn more about Kolbert’s first novel, Field Notes from a CatastropheVisit our Popular Picks page for more common reading options from Macmillan!

The Sixth Extinction • Picador • 336 pages