College-Wide Reading Program

College-Wide Reading

The College-Wide Reading Program is an initiative intended to provide a common reading that encourages thought, discussion, and collaboration at Delaware County Community College. All members of the College community are invited to nominate books for the program and to participate in related activities throughout the academic year.

Essay Contest

The winner of the first annual College-Wide Reading essay contest is Premisa Kerthi. Premisa’s poem “A Mysterious Life,” shows creativity and engagement with the themes of Butterfly Boy: Memories of a Chicano Mariposa. As the winner, Premisa introduced Rigoberto Gonzáles when he visited the College this April. The judges also selected James Simmons’s poem “The Strife of Life,” for their judges’ choice. Congratulations Premisa, James, and all participants in the contest.

About the Program

The goals of the program include:

  • Promoting a habit of reading
  • Encouraging the exploration of diverse experiences and perspectives
  • Providing a common discussion point for all members of the College community
Titles selected meet the minimum standards listed below.
  • Readable by our entire population, including developmental and ESL students
  • Available in paperback
  • Cross-disciplinary appeal
  • Ability to be incorporated into curricular and extracurricular activities
  • Presents diverse or unique perspective

2016-17 Book

Butterfly Boy coverButterfly Boy: Memories of a Chicano Mariposa
by Rigoberto González 

"Heartbreaking, poetic, and intensely personal, Butterfly Boy is a unique coming out and coming-of-age story of a first-generation Chicano who trades one life for another, only to discover that history and memory are not exchangeable or forgettable. Growing up among poor migrant Mexican farmworkers, Rigoberto González also faces the pressure of coming-of-age as a gay man in a culture that prizes machismo. Losing his mother when he is twelve, González must then confront his father’s abandonment and an abiding sense of cultural estrangement, both from his adopted home in the United States and from a Mexican birthright. His only sense of connection gets forged in a violent relationship with an older man."

Click here to see the full unedited version of the video.

Nomination Process

Students, faculty, staff, and all other college community members are invited to nominate books for future College-Wide Reading Programs. Please nominate any and all titles you feel would lend themselves to positive college-wide reading, discussion and programming. Nominate a book for future selection here


The College wide reading program began in 2006 and was called the One-Book One-College Program when it started. Over the years the program has evolved and its name changed to its current name, the College Wide Reading Program. Titles were not selected in 2014-15 and 2009-10.



by Edward Humes
Library Guide


Water by the Spoonful 
by Quiara Alegria Hudes
Library guide


Girl in Translation 
by Jean Kwok
Library guide


The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
Library guide


The Glass Castle 
by Jeannette Walls
Library guide


With Courage and Cloth 
by Ann Bausum and 
Having Our Say 
by Sarah L. Delany, A. Elizabeth Delany and Amy Hill Hearth


Flags of Our Fathers 
by James Bradley 
(with Ron Powers)

Selected in partnership with the Delaware County public library’s Fall For A Book - One Book, One Community initiative.


Things Fall Apart 
by Chinua Achebe
Library Guide