The Big Read

Willimantic - posted Sep, 11 2012

WILLIMANTIC- To help youth participate more fully in society and the workplace, Eastern Connecticut State University has joined 78 other not-for-profit institutions and organizations nationwide in an effort to restore reading to the center of American culture. The Big Read Project, a program of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), seeks to enhance literacy abilities by raising public awareness of reading. Eastern received a $14,900 Big Read grant to foster an appreciation of quality literature among area young adults, college and high school students, especially reluctant readers. To carry out this community-wide program, the University is involving libraries, public schools, local and state officials, all of who will engage in discussions, lectures, public readings and theatrical performances. Eastern’s intent in writing its grant proposal was to focus on English language learners in Willimantic, which has a large Latino population. Eastern’s Big Read Kickoff takes place on Sept. 18 at 2 p. m. in the Betty R. Tipton Room of the University’s Student Center and will feature Eastern President Elsa Núñez; Patricia Banach, director of library services at Eastern; Ann Anderberg, assistant professor of education at Eastern; Lucy Ferriss, Writer-in-Residence at Trinity College; and Denise Merrill, Connecticut Secretary of the State. Speakers will discuss the latest research on why literacy is matters; their own literary histories; and how learning to read has influenced their career paths. Persons attending the kick-off are asked to bring a non-perishable food item to donate to the local food bank.

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