Summer Reading Program

Miami welcomes new students to its engaged community of learners through the Summer Reading Program. In this important tradition, now 35 years old, we underline those activities we value most as a community: critical engagement with ideas; close interaction among faculty, staff, and students; and reading, listening, reflecting, talking, and learning as characteristics of active, responsible citizenship. As students' introduction to the types of dialogues they will engage in here with other learners, the summer reading program asks students to read a book during the summer and to return to campus in August prepared to discuss it with their fellow students and others in breakout sessions that immediately follow the Convocation ceremony.

Become a Discussion Facilitator

Volunteer faculty and staff discussion facilitators play a critical role in making the post-Convocation ceremony discussions meaningful experiences for our new students. As a discussion facilitator, you will be provided a copy of the book.

View facilitator's information and register »

After you sign up, please come to the Office of Liberal Education in 103 Campus Avenue Building to pick up your complimentary copy of the book. You will be added to a Learning Management System (Canvas) site for discussion facilitators that will contain resources such as example discussion topics, an open forum and chat room for you to connect with other facilitators, and articles, links, and other information regarding the book, author, topic, and related activities on campus. Room assignments for the post-Convocation discussions will also be posted to the site closer to Convocation Day.

You will be invited to attend a facilitator meeting the day before Convocation, where an expert or perhaps the Convocation speaker will discuss the book and answer questions.

The 2017 Summer Reading book is Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance. 

Convocation 2017 will be held on Friday, August 25, at 9:00 am.  Discussion groups will follow later that morning. The convocation speaker will be Stephen T. Williams, Mayor of Huntington, West Virginia. Huntington has been named America's Best Community as part of a revitalization initiative that address man of the issues highlighted in the book.