Faculty members want to restore first-year reading program

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) – Purdue faculty members want to restore a reading program for first-year students. They said the Common Reading Program was cut without warning during winter break.

“It’s a way for entering freshmen to, they all read the same book. Then, I’m sure, various instructors use different ways to talk about the book,” said David Williams, the University Senate Chairman.

Williams said many of Purdue’s peers have common reading programs, but Purdue no longer does.

“Our plans are to have Boiler Gold Rush with a new format, more emphasis on academic success, preparedness, academic integrity, financial management, things we think our incoming students really need,” said Mitch Daniels, Purdue University President.

The University Senate voted 54-21 Monday on a resolution that supports restoring the program.

“The question is, how does that resolution get put into effect? And I suggested that it be sent to the provost office,” said Williams.

Daniels said despite the vote, the next round of incoming freshmen will be looking at the new format for Boiler Gold Rush, without a common reading program.

“Let’s give it a try this year and we’ll evaluate the results and see where we are nine or 10 months from now,” said Daniels.

While Daniels and faculty members don’t see eye-to-eye on bringing the program back in the fall, they agreed that work needs to be done to make the program as effective as possible.

In other news, at the end of Monday’s meeting, Williams handed over the title as chair to Patricia Hart because it was the last University Senate meeting of the year.

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