One Book


The Book of Unknown Americans 

2018 Selection:

The Book of Unknown Americans

By: Cristina Henriquez

"The truth was that I didn't know which I was. I wasn't allowed to claim the thing I felt, and didn't feel the thing I was supposed to claim." - Book excerpt

Common Intellectual Experiences are one of ten high impact practices identified by the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U). What better way to launch a successful college career than by engaging in a meaningful conversation about relevant topics!

The One Book Committee welcomes ideas from the university community to support inclusion in the first-year curriculum, as well as for events and programming. Please contact the office of Student Transitions if you wish to get involved and join the conversation early!

Written by Cristina Henriquez, the 2018 One Book Selection was chosen for its tremendous interdisciplinary potential and the meaningful conversation it will inspire about topics that matter. 

The Minneapolis Star Tribune Offers "A remarkable novel that every American should read"

The 2018 Selection Committee

We are in the process of developing an extensive selection of programs and events, as well as resources and support for faculty and students to encourage dynamic conversations surrounding the 2018 One Book Selection. Please visit soon for details!


All programs and events are open to all campus and to public.

The mission of the One Book program is to engage first-year students, as well as the campus community, in a common intellectual experience that promotes critical thinking and interdisciplinary conversation.  This experience will allow participants to strengthen academic skills, create connections with peers, instructors, and community members, and relate universal themes to personal experience and identity.  The program seeks to reflect WCU’s core values and responsibilities as a regionally engaged university.

One Book committee members will serve as ambassadors who aid in integrating reading selection themes into course curricula, campus events, service learning opportunities, and departmental goals. The 2018 committee comprises individuals from across campus, ensuring that values and views of all academic units are considered and represented.

The One Book Experience Will:

  • Introduce clear expectations of academic performance and engagement
  • Create opportunities to reveal and explore notions of community
  • Reflect the University’s mission and core values
  • Integrate book themes into course curricula, particularly transition course curricula
  • Encourage interaction between peers, instructors, campus and local community members
  • Foster interdisciplinary discourse and partnership
  • Offer diverse perspectives and cultural exploration
  • Stimulate student self-discovery and personal development
  • Inspire participation and support from faculty and administrators by clearly conveying the book’s relevance to the academic experience and student enrichment.
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