Ivy Tech volunteers to read banned books to celebrate Read Across America Day

February 27, 2012 

Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus is celebrating Read Across America Day on Friday, March 2 from Noon to 5 p.m. with open microphone readings of banned and challenged books in the main campus Student Commons, located in the Connie and Steve Ferguson Academic Building. The event is hosted and coordinated by students in Ivy Tech – Bloomington’s American Literature After 1865 service-learning class and the Creative Writing Club.

Read Across America Day commemorates the birthday of Theodor Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, and encourages every adult to read to a child on March 2.

Ivy Tech – Bloomington is going to use this day to celebrate the freedom to read by focusing on reading banned and challenged books – starting with Dr. Seuss’s own The Lorax. In addition to the reading event, students are running a book drive from February 27 through March 9 to collect paperback books for Boxcar Books and the Midwest Pages to Prisoners project. Bins will be located throughout Ivy Tech’s main campus. Those who donate books or volunteer to read at the Read Across America Day event on March 2 will receive an “I Read Banned Books” button or free cookies supplied by Chef Jeff Tabor’s Ivy Tech HOSP 105 students.

Participants in the reading on March 2 can select their own banned or challenged book to read, but plenty of books will be available to choose from on site, selected by the ENGL 223 students. Contact Professor Elizabeth Starr at estarr@ivytech.edu to sign up to read.

Students are blogging about banned and challenged books on their class blog—titled Ban THIS!—at http://ivytechbloomblog.blogspot.com. The blog is a service learning project in partnership with the Ivy Tech – Bloomington Library. The public, students, and staff are invited to read and comment on student blog entries. Students will select and recognize the best outside comment on their blog at the end of the semester.

Ivy Tech Community College (www.ivytech.edu) is the state’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system serving nearly 200,000 students annually. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering affordable degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its community along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association.