Common Reading Program
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AUM Connected: Common Reading Program

AUM Connected common reading program 2015 selection The Ghost Map





Click here for the Student Reading Guide to The Ghost Map. 

Click here for a short video of a dramatic description of The Ghost Map.

The Faculty Teaching Guide is available on CELT's AUMnet page.

Spring 2016 AUM Connected Events

January 22, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.,  The Painted Veil, Goodwyn Hall 109. Come watch this 2006 film starring Ed Norton and Naomi Watts, and enjoy a pizza lunch.

February 5, 10:00 - 11:00 a.m., "Fracking and Water Issues" talk by guest lecturer and Inside Climate News journalist Neela Banerjee, Goodwyn Hall 208.  

February 11, 6:30-8:30 p.m.,  The Happening, Taylor Center 223. Come watch this 2008 science fiction film by M. Night Shyamalan, starring Mark Wahlberg and Zooey Deschanel. Light snacks provided.

February 26, 10:00 - 11:00 a.m., Breakfast Book Discussion of The Ghost Map, Taylor Center 222. Come join us for free breakfast and small group discussion of The Ghost Map.

March 7, 9:30 a.m. - 4:45 p.m., AUM Reads! Day, Taylor Center 230.
    9:30 - 10:30 a.m., a talk by Dr. Michel Aaij (English & Philosophy).

    11:00 - Noon, a talk by Kathy Dugan (Medical & Clinical Laboratory Sciences).

    12:05 - 2:00 p.m., Film screening of Blindness (2008), free pizza lunch, and the big  
           announcement of next year's common reading book!

    2:15 - 3:15 p.m., Dr. Naomi Slipp (Fine Arts), "The Art of Cholera: Microbes, Monsters, and
           the 19th-century Medical Imagination".

     3:45 - 4:45 p.m., a talk by Dr. Steve Lobello (Psychology).

April 1, 1:00 - 3:00 p.m., Contagion, Goodwyn Hall 109. Come watch this 2011 film with an all-star cast (Matt Damon, Laurence Fishburne, Jude Law, Kate Winslet, and Gwenneth Paltrow). Light Snacks provided.

Students who attend three (3) AUM Connected events during the 2015-2016 academic year will receive a free t-shirt, while supplies last.

Fall 2015 AUM Connected Events

August 19, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.,  Zombie Bash!, Taylor Center 230. Free pizza, door prizes, and a showing of I Am Legend, starring Will Smith.

August 20, 7 p.m., Jesse Meuse Concert, AUM Gym.  Free performance by former AUM student and American Idol finalist, with a meet and greet to follow in Taylor Center 230. Bring a donation for the Montgomery Humane Society.

August 28, 2:30-3:30 p.m., Documentary on The Ghost Map, Goodwyn Hall 112.

September 9, 4 p.m., Lecture by Dr. Steve Lobello, Psychology, “Pellagra: NOT an Italian dish!”, Goodwyn Hall 109.

September 28, 6:30 p.m., Lecture by Terry Winemiller, Sociology and GIS, “The Ghost Map, Then and Now,” Taylor Center 221.

October 28, 8:00 a.m. – 5 p.m., Contagion Game, on campus. Students, faculty, and staff will get “infected” with a sticker and will have to visit the CELT office (800 Library Tower) to get “cured.” We will also be tweeting trivia questions for prizes from @AUMCONNECTED.

October 28, 5:00 p.m., Showing of the movie Contagion, Taylor Center 223.

November 3, 12 p.m. - 2 p.m., Showing of the movie Outbreak, with an introduction by Dr. Chelsea Ward, Biology, Goodwyn Hall 112.

Social Media
: AUM Connected has a Facebook Page (AUM Connected Common Reading Program), and a Twitter account @AUMConnected. We encourage the campus to use the hashtag #warhawkbook in their social media posts.

“Picture Me Reading” Contest: Take a picture of yourself reading The Ghost Map by Steven Johnson, and you could win a prize! Photos may be taken in any setting, but must be tasteful and appropriate for posting on our Facebook page. Be creative! We will post all photos as they are received and the deadline for submissions is August 3, 2015. Please email all photo submissions to Dr. Lee A. Farrow at Winners will be determined by the AUM Connected committee and the number of “likes” received.

AUM Connected History and Goals

In 2012, Auburn University at Montgomery initiated its first Common Reading Program with the book The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. The program included campus-wide discussions, lectures, and even a field trip for AUM students to the Legacy Museum at Tuskegee Institute. Now, in its fourth year, the AUM Common Reading Program, “AUM Connected,” has selected The Ghost Map by Steven Johnson for the 2015-2016 academic year. All incoming freshman will be required to read The Ghost Map in their UNIV 1000 courses, but upperclassmen (and women) are encouraged to participate as well. The goals of AUM Connected are:

1) to engage students in a common academic and social experience that helps to create a sense of connection to the university and to faculty and peers through a new campus tradition

2) to introduce students to college-level discussion in a non-threatening setting and to demonstrate the relevance of participating in an academic experience outside of class

3) to provide students, faculty, staff, and members of the local community with opportunities to interact in meaningful conversations relating to contemporary social and cultural issues

Selection Process

In September of each year, the AUM Connected committee seeks nominations from the campus, including faculty, staff, and students. The committee asks that the nominators consider the following elements: 1) availability – A nominated book must be in print, in paperback and digital formats, and it should be something that students are unlikely to have read in high school, and unlikely to read in basic college classes; 2) engaging and accessible – A nominated book must be of reasonable length (no more than 350 pp.), and appeal to a wide range of students and disciplines; 3) good writing – A nominated book must demonstrate good writing; 4) relevance – A nominated book must have themes that are relevant to students and can evoke meaningful discussions of social and cultural issues; and, 5) potential for year-long programming. The committee then carefully reviews all nominated books and narrows the list to no more than six possible selections. This list is then put forward for a campus-wide vote in January.

For more information about AUM Connected, please contact Ms. Danitra Tolbert at 244-3525 or