One Book-One College becoming a tradition at CCC


Labor Day marks the end of the summer. And the fall season ushers in new beginnings at schools and colleges throughout America.

At Cumberland County College, some new students may be apprehensive over the prospect of attending college for the first time, particularly those students who have been out of school for five years or more. But the new students will gain confidence by talking to their classmates. More than likely, the returning students will tell the new students that they can succeed if they work hard. And the professors, though challenging, will be more than willing to lead the new students on their educational journey.

The end result: CCC students eventually achieve goals that they didn’t know were obtainable. I think this happens because Cumberland is a community of dedicated staff and students who want utilize education to continually move forward.

A community-oriented activity that has occurred every fall for the past four years is On Book-One College. The idea of the campaign is to get the campus and the community to bond by discussing relevant themes covered in a single book, which is a “must read” on campus, and residents are also welcome to read the book.

This is becoming a fall season tradition on campus that begins when CCC starts the academic year. Students, staff and community members read the “One Book,” and then the campus comes alive with discussions and presentations and, ultimately, the book’s author visits CCC.

This year’s OBOC selection is “The Freedom Writers Diary,” by Erin Gruwell, who will give a presentation on campus this fall on a date to be determined. A #1 New York Times bestseller, “The Freedom Writers Diary” is the amazing true story of how Gruwell and 150 teens in a school located in a violent urban community used writing to change themselves and the world around them.

With powerful entries from the students’ own diaries and a narrative text by Gruwell, “The Freedom Writers Diary” is an uplifting, unforgettable example of how hard work, courage and the spirit of determination changed the lives of a teacher and her students. Last year, “Freedom Writers” was released as a film starring Hilary Swank.

So enjoy the unofficial end of the summer during Labor Day weekend. For many of us, this is one of those special opportunities to be with our family and friends. And, hopefully, you’ll get some time to read a great book.

Professor Sharon Kewish and the entire OBOC committee invite you to read “The Freedom Writers Diary” and attend the events this fall on our campus. Times and dates will be announced. We hope you will join us!