Global Engagement

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Keker First Year Common Read

The cover of 'Looking for Palestine: Growing Up Confused in an Arab-American Family' by Najla Said The Keker First Year Common Read (KFYCR) is designed to introduce new students to the intellectual life of UNCG. Offered through the New Student Transitions and First Year Experience Office, this is an opportunity for new students to read a common summer book and engage in curricular and co-curricular learning through classroom discussions and special programs.

The 2018 Keker First Year Common Read choice is The Distance Between Us, a memoir about life before and after illegally immigrating from Mexico to the United States by Reyna Grande.

Born in Mexico and raised by her grandparents after her parents left to find work in the U.S. at nine years old, Reyna enters the United States as an undocumented immigrant to live with her father. Filled with hope, she quickly realizes that life in America is far from perfect. Her father isn’t the man she dreamed about all those years in Mexico. His big dreams for his children are what gets them across the border, but his alcoholism and rage undermine all his hard work and good intentions.

Reyna finds solace from a violent home in books and writing, inspired by the Latina voices she reads. After an explosive altercation, Reyna breaks away, going on to become the first person in her family to obtain a higher education, earning a college degree and then an M.F.A. in Creative Writing.

The author visit is scheduled for October 10th at 7:00 p.m. in the UNCG Auditorium. Due to space limitation, this event is only open to first year students.

Learn more about the Keker First Year Common Read here: newstudents.uncg.edu/yfy/keker/