PULLMAN– The WSU Common Reading Committee extended the deadline for students, faculty, and staff to submit nominations for the 2009 Common Reading book to Dec. 15.
Next year will be the third year of WSU’s very successful Common Reading program. The program unites the large body of incoming freshman students with a book they received in the summer prior to the start of classes in August.  The program encourages instructors to incorporate the book and related topical material into their fall semester freshman classes.
In fall 2008, the book selected was “Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers,” by best-selling author Mary Roach.  The committee supplemented the basic program with a new weekly evening lecture series, dubbed “Common Reading Tuesdays.”  Faculty from disciplines across the university made presentations to student audiences on aspects of their field and their research that tied to themes in the common reading book.
“At 11 events we had a total attendance of 3,600 people, which was tremendous” says Karen Weathermon, director of WSU Learning Communities and co-chair of the Common Reading Committee.  “We received feedback from students that they appreciated the expansion of the program to the evening events.”
Brandon Brackett, the residential education director of Streit Perham Hall, has compiled student feedback and identified the trend that students are interested in the topic of the book and want to learn more about the topics presented at the Tuesday lectures.
“That’s great news,” says Weathermon. “We’re hoping we can continue that trend into next year with a new book, and we’d love for students to submit nominations for books that they think would fit the program.
“We’re looking for books that are multi-disciplinary, would be interesting for students to read, and hopefully would address or encourage the research process.  WSU is a renowned research university and the common reading program and events help new students become familiar with that in a personal way.”
To nominate a book, visit the Web site at commonreading.wsu.edu