Royal Reads


A First Year Reading Program

The Royal Reads Program at The University of Scranton creates a shared experience for ourfirst-year class through the reading of a carefully selected book. We select a Royal Reads book each year to introduce our newest students to the Ignatian values at the heart of our Universityand to invite students to consider how these values can shape one's college experience and one's life. Throughout each student's first year at the University of Scranton, students will encounter themes from the selected book in classes and in extracurricular opportunities, as well as in a wide range of formal and informal discussions.

2014-2015 ROYAL READS

Raising Gentle Men - Royal Reads 2014-2015


The book selected for the 2014-2015 academic year Royal Reads Program is Raising Gentle Men: Lives at the Orphanage Edge by Jay Sullivan.  In between graduating from Boston College and attending Fordham University Law School, Sullivan taught English in Kingston, Jamaica. His book tells the story of a small group of nuns, a large group of boys and a handful of recent college grads as they build a community of caring.

Raising Gentle Men is not full of dramatic, life-altering events. And yet, the story is perfect. The power of Jay’s story is in the small details: a bed-time story, a brief moment holding hands. And isn’t that the lesson for us all when searching how to serve others? We shouldn’t underestimate God’s power to work in small ways.” (America Magazine)

This year, the Royal Reads Program is happy to announce that Jay Sullivan will visit the University of Scranton on Thursday, September 18, 2014 as the keynote speaker for our annual lecture on Ignatian Values in Action (6PM at the Byron Center).  All incoming freshman are required to attend this event. During his visit, Sullivan will also meet with University students, campus and community leaders, and community service providers.  


  • Click here to learn more about Jay Sullivan and his book: Raising Gentle Men.
  • Just announced June 2014: Catholic Press Association Awards Raising Gentle Men "2014 Best Book from a Small Publisher". Click here for press release.


2013-2014 ROYAL READS

Almost Home

The book selected for the 2013-2014 academic year Royal Reads Program is Almost Home by a Kevin Ryan and Tina Kelley.  Kevin Ryan is the President of Covenant House, which is the largest charity serving homeless, trafficked and runaway youth in the Americas.  Tina Kelley was a staff writer for the New York Times for ten years and shared in a Pulitzer Prize for the paper’s coverage of the September 11 attacks.  Almost Home describes the lives of six young people who struggle with issues such as family violence, prostitution, teen parenthood, rejection based on sexual orientation, and aging out of foster care without a family.  Almost Home is “full of hope, compassion, and practical suggestions on how to fight youth homelessness” so, as a community, we can “help young people attain the bright futures they deserve.”

Both Kevin Ryan and Tina Kelley visited the University of Scranton on Thursday, September 19, 2013 as the keynote speakers for our annual lecture on Ignatian Values in Action.  During their visit, Kevin Ryan and Tina Kelley met with University students, campus and community leaders, and community service providers.   


2012-2013 ROYAL READS


Tattoos on the Heart

The book selected for the 2012-13 academic year Royal Reads Program is Tattoos on theHeart: The Power of Boundless Compassion by a Father Gregory Boyle, S.J. Father Boyle isthe founder of Homeboy Industries, a widely recognized gang intervention program locatedin Los Angeles, California. His book describes the struggles and the triumphs of former gangmembers and their families, emphasizing our common humanity, the power of hope, and ourconviction “that no life is less valuable than another.”

This year, the Royal Reads Program is happy to announce that Father Boyle will visit theUniversity of Scranton during the third week of September as the keynote speaker for our annuallecture on Ignatian Values in Action. During his visit, Father Boyle will meet with Universitystudents, campus and community leaders, and community service providers.

Students will also have the opportunity to meet and listen to current University of Scrantonstudents and faculty who have participated in service learning trips to Homeboy Industries in LosAngeles.

To prepare for these events, we expect students to read Tattoos on the Heart. The book isavailable for purchase in the campus bookstore. Five copies are also on reserve at the WeinbergLibrary on campus.

Students should be prepared to discuss ideas and engage in this powerful shared learningexperience with the class of 2016.

2012-2013 EVENTS

Throughout the academic year, there will be a number of programs and events related to theRoyal Reads topic. Students are encouraged to look for related events through the Fall andSpring semesters.

  • Ignatian Values in Action Lecture 
    • Monday, September 17, 2012 @ 6:00 PM
      Special guest speaker Fr. Gregory Boyle and two former gang members will join ourcampus for a day of speaking and engagement. This will culminate in a special lecture at 6:00 pm in the Byron Center on Monday, September 17, 2012. Details for this event to be announced.
    • Monday, September 17, 2012 @ 8:00 PM
      “G and the Homeboys…and Me: Stories of Transformation”



Download reflection and discussion questions to enhance one’s learning andengagement.