Royal Read

The Royal Read creates a shared experience for our first-year class through the reading of a carefully selected book. The goal of the Royal Read is to introduce our newest students to the Ignatian values at the heart of our University and to invite students to consider how these values can shape their college experience and life.

For information regarding the Royal Reads Program and the Ignatian Values in Action Lecture, contact: Dr. Hank Willenbrink at
Phone: 570-941-4353  |  Email:

Selection Process

The Royal Read and Ignatian Values in Action (IVA) speaker are determined through a process of faculty input beginning with a call sent to faculty members who teach in the FYS by the FYS Coordinator. After faculty send in potential titles, the FYS Advisory Group meets to discuss the merits of each work and proposed speakers for the IVA lecture. A recommendation is then made to the Provost and President to determine the upcoming year’s read and IVA speaker. Inquiries about the process can be addressed to the FYS Coordinator, Dr. Hank Willenbrink.

Current Book

Royal Read

The Royal Reads book for the 2023-2024 School Year is "Living Against the Grain" by Tim Muldoon. 

The Royal Reads Program is pleased to announce that Dr. Muldoon will visit The University of Scranton as the keynote speaker at our annual Ignatian Values in Action lecture, which will be held on Thursday, September 21, 2023 at 7:30 PM in the Byron Center.

All first year students are required to attend.

Past Books

2022-2023: On Juneteenth by Annette Gordon-Reed
2021-2022: The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin
2020-2021: Barking to the Choir by Father Gregory Boyle
2019-2020: The Bread of Angels by Stephanie Saldaña
2018-2019: Stories from the Shadows by James J. O'Connell, M.D.
2017-2018: The Jesuit Guide to Almost Everything by James Martin, S.J.
2016-2017: Lila by Marilynne Robinson
2015-2016: Dead Man Walking by Sister Helen Prejean
2014-2015: Raising Gentle Men: Lives at the Orphanage Edge by Jay Sullivan
2013-2014: Almost Home by Kevin Ryan and Tina Kelley
2012-2013: Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion by Father Gregory Boyle, S.J.
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