UNLV Athletics and University Libraries have partnered on a new initiative aimed at driving engagement throughout campus, the two departments announced Monday.
The UNLV Book Club is being co-chaired by Director of Athletics Desiree Reed-Francois and Dean of University Libraries Maggie Farrell.
Open to all UNLV students, including student-athletes, as an optional offering, the group will focus on one book per semester and hold regular discussion groups via virtual video conferences.
The program’s first book will be A Most Beautiful Thing by Arshay Cooper, the moving true story of a group of young men growing up on Chicago’s West side who form the first all-Black high school rowing team in the nation. In doing so, they not only transform a sport, but also their lives. The book was selected as it touches on a number of current issues including racism, education, trauma, and family.
“This new partnership with University Libraries is something unique during these unprecedented times,” Reed-Francois said. “We continue to look for different ways to engage our campus and this is another great way to foster community among our students and staff, while at the same time encourage reading for leisure.”
“Reading is key to developing understanding and empathy so the Libraries are thrilled to promote conversations around critical topics facing our students,” Farrell said.
There is no charge for UNLV students to join the book club and a limited number of books will be made available on a first-come, first-served basis. Meetings will be held October 20, November 17, and December 14. Cooper is scheduled to attend and participate in the November 17 meeting.
Students can join the book club by filling out the registration form.
Funding for 30 copies of "A Most Beautiful Thing" is being provided by Curtis Myles, President and CEO of Las Vegas Monorail. Jamba Juice has generously donated gift certificates for the first 40 individuals to sign up.