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Ivy Tech to celebrate Read Across America Day with open mic readings

March 1, 2011

Bloomington, Ind. – Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus is celebrating Read Across America Day on Wednesday, March 2 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. with an open mic reading of banned and challenged books in the main campus Student Commons. The event is hosted and coordinated by students in Ivy Tech’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.

Elizabeth Starr, Ivy Tech associate professor of Liberal Arts/English, said that Ivy Tech is going to use this day to celebrate the freedom to read by focusing on reading banned and challenged books – starting with Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax. “It has been exciting to teach a service-learning class this semester because the students have really embraced the project and are excited to read aloud and blog for the public, and work as partners with the Ivy Tech Library to produce and promote their blogs,” Starr said.

In addition to the reading event, students are running a book drive from Feb. 28 to March 9 to collect paperback books for Boxcar Books and the Midwest Pages to Prisoners project. Bins are located throughout Ivy Tech’s main campus. Those who donate books at the Read Across America Day event on March 2 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. will receive a free cookie (as long as supplies last).

Participants in the reading on March 2 at Ivy Tech can select their own banned or challenged book to read, but plenty of books will be available to choose from on site.

Students are blogging about banned and challenged books on their class blog at The blog is a joint project with the Ivy Tech Library. Blog entries include posts about such works as Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, Mark Twain’s Pudd’nhead Wilson, and William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying. The public, students and staff are invited to read and comment on student blog entries. "

Ivy Tech Community College 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.