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Committee selected Western Reads book for 2015-16 school year

“Do It Anyway: The New Generation of Activists” by Courtney Martin has been chosen for next year’s 2015-16 Western Reads book. A committee comprised of students and faculty, Dawn Dietrich, director of Western Reads, said, made the choice. They chose Martin’s book because she is not too much older than students at Western, Dietrich said. Dietrich hopes Martin will be more relatable to the students due to her presence on the Internet as a blogger. Jeremy Cushman, a member of the committee who helped selected the book and assistant English professor, said Martin was writing about activism with the idea that a single person can’t go out and save the world. The book is about how people can live their own lives day to day with a different perspective on what activism really means, Cushman said. The book speaks so well to Western students and the community and culture here, Anna Carey, director of New Student Services, said. The eight different stories within the book are so relevant to Western students and the things they do in classrooms and activities around campus, Carey said. “I hope it will inspire them and help them understand that an education is preparation to be a leader in your community,” Carey said. “I hope it would help them see how they can apply their skills and follow their passion.” Western has a campus where students have a strong level of activism, Dietrich said. These students are demonstrating leadership on our campus, she said. The programming that goes with the promotion of the book will feature students on Western’s campus next year. The committee is still in the brainstorming stage right now, Dietrich said. They are reaching out and asking anyone interested if they want to be involved, she said. So far they are bringing in the author and two activists with her, Dietrich said. They will be doing things that have been popular in the past like panels and lunches with the author, but they are also willing to try new things next year, she said.

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