Giving the Gift of Reading

This story is featured in the Spring 2019 edition of the HPU Magazine. Discover below how one of HPU the many gardens at HPU offer sanctuary and a place of reflection. 

HPU Students Donate Thousands of Books to Local Children

CLICK HEREto see the full Spring 2019 Magazine!

“I want to spend the rest of the day here!” said Omar Shkier, a Parkview Village Elementary student, after opening a box of books in his school’s library.

Seeing these kinds of reactions has become an annual tradition for freshmen at HPU. More than 1,000 books were donated to area elementary schools by the Class of 2022.

Through HPU’s Common Experience program, which includes a common read, new students were invited to share their favorite book with a local child by donating a copy when they arrived to campus for the start of the fall semester. The books were distributed at Montlieu Academy of Technology, Parkview Village Elementary, Welborn Academy of Science and Technology, Kirkman Park Elementary, Fairview Elementary and Oak Hill Elementary schools.

“One goal of HPU’s Welcome Week is to have the incoming class participate in a meaningful service project,” said Scott Wojciechowski, assistant vice president for Student Life. “By donating their favorite book and writing an inspirational message to the reader, we connect our newest students at HPU to the High Point community and our future learners.”

The Common Experience is a yearlong collaborative project that engages new students across disciplines as they make the transition to college. Every year the experience focuses on a central theme and allows students to immediately begin giving back to the community.

“I greatly appreciate HPU because we are in need of new books in the hands of our students,” said Silvana Mazo, Parkview’s librarian.

Kim Scott, an HPU alumna and the principal of Montlieu Academy, looks forward to the book giveaway event for many reasons.

“Every year, Montlieu children look forward to receiving these books from and spending time with HPU students,” said Scott.

For Meredith Burgess, an HPU student from Owings, Maryland, her role in the book giveaway meant so much.

“It’s nice to watch the books go back to the community,” said Burgess. “To actually see the kids react is amazing.”

Rosie Tarara, HPU’s Education Fellows coordinator, said she wants HPU students to see their impact on the community.

“It’s important for our HPU students to see how excited these students are and to realize the importance of giving back,” said Tarara.

HPU students only had a short moment in each classroom, but they had a lasting impact.

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