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Events > FYE Summer Reading
The First Year Experience (FYE) and the Writing Programs at Philadelphia University announced that The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot has been chosen as the text for the FYE 2011 Summer Reading Program.
Respond and Win to Week Five of the Summer Reading Blog

Congratulations Autumn Rockhill, you are the winner of last week’s blog contest. Autumn wrote an awesome response on how she plans to integrate simplicity into her daily routines. The post was well written and pulled in support from the text and outside sources. As a prize, Autumn will get either $50 added to her campus card or a pair of TOMS shoes.   

This week’s blog centers around building trust. According to Blake Mycoskie, trust is an integral part to building a sustainable, efficient venture. Trust, Mycoskie goes on to explain, is a two way street between the two members of a relationship.  Employer and employee, customer and salesmen, student and teacher- all of these relationships require open conversation, humility and having a culture where it is okay to make a mistake as long as you learn from it.  

This week we are going to ask you to think big and be vocal. With the Presidential election just a few months away this will be the first time that you all will be able to vote! Reflect on what examples of healthy, trustful relationships the author included in the text and also reflect of the positive, strong relationships you have in your personal life.

Now, for the big question… do you think that Americans trust their government? In what ways has the government betrayed its citizens’ trust? How can the federal office recover trust using some of the methods Blake Mycoskie cited in the book.

Just a word of caution: you can say what you would like but please respect the opinions and viewpoints of others! We look forward to hearing what you have to say.

You should log on and provide your response by 12pm on Friday, August 10, 2012. As was the case this week, the best response will be selected to receive a $50 which will be added to your PhilaU Campus Card or a FREE pair of TOMS shoes. You should log on to https://sp.philau.edu/blogs/Events/FYESummerReading/default.aspx.

To participate, simply log on using your PhilaU username and password (should be the same login information that you use for your email WebAdvisor portal). If for some reason you have problems logging in to post your response, please email HelpDesk@PhilaU.edu for assistance.

Keepin it Simple- Respond and Win to Week four of the Summer Reading Blog

WOW, less than a month until classes begin! We hope your summers are awesome and we cannot wait to welcome you to our Philadelphia University community. First thing first- congratulations to Melissa Garcia for winning last week’s blog contest. She used great examples from the text and real life experience to support her idea that imagination truly does trump money. As a reward, Melissa will have the option of choosing either $50 to our school’s bookstore or a pair of TOMS shoes.

Our next chapter is called “Keep it Simple.” As college freshman, you will find that this principle may be the key to your success here. You will also find that simplifying is much harder than it seems! Take a look at Blake’s starting tips for simplifying your life and write a response that explains how you can integrate some of those into your daily life and what impact simplifying will have on your productivity.

You should log on and provide your response by 12pm on Friday, July 14, 2012. As was the case this week, the best response will be selected to receive a $50 which will be added to your PhilaU Campus Card or a FREE pair of TOMS shoes. You should log on to https://sp.philau.edu/blogs/Events/FYESummerReading/default.aspx.

To participate, simply log on using your PhilaU username and password (should be the same login information that you use for your email WebAdvisor portal). If for some reason you have problems logging in to post your response, please email HelpDesk@PhilaU.edu for assistance.
Week Three of the Summer Reading Blog- Respond and Win!

Philadelphia University would like to congratulate Kodiak Rogers on winning last week’s blog contest! His piece on facing fears was beautifully written and showcased a real understanding for the second principle of Start Something That Matters. As a reward, Kodiak will have the option of choosing either $50 to our school’s bookstore or a pair of TOMS shoes.

In chapter four, Blake Mycoskie focused on how to be resourceful without resources. Starting from the bottom, with little financial support can be a daunting task and you may not know where to being. However, after you overcome that fear you will find that having limited resources can push you to think outside of the box and come up with creative solutions.

One of the subchapters in this section is titled “Imagination Trumps Money.” This week, we would like to know if you agree or disagree with this philosophy and why. What are some effective strategies for making what little resources an organization may have go a long way? Be sure to use examples from the text and also from your personal experiences.  

You should log on and provide your response by 12pm on Friday, July 20, 2012. As was the case this week, the best response will be selected to receive a $50 which will be added to your PhilaU Campus Card or a FREE pair of TOMS shoes. You should log on to https://sp.philau.edu/blogs/Events/FYESummerReading/default.aspx.

To participate, simply log on using your PhilaU username and password (should be the same login information that you use for your email WebAdvisor portal). If for some reason you have problems logging in to post your response, please email HelpDesk@PhilaU.edu for assistance.

Week Two of the Summer Blog- Respond and Win!

Hey freshman- hope you are having an awesome summer! Big thank you to all of those who participated in last week’s blog contest- we were impressed by the amount of enthusiasm and passion participants show. If you did not have the opportunity to participate last week, please feel free to join our conversation now!

 

Congratulations to Bethany King whose submission was selected for her well written and compelling piece on the importance of selflessness and her use of specific quotes to do so. Bethany will receive a $50 added to her PhilaU campus card.

 

As many of you may already know, Philadelphia University is sponsoring a weekly blog about our summer reading book, Start Something That Matters. Week two of the essay contest is underway. Last week, many of you shared your personal stories with us and this week we are challenging you all to face your fears.

 

In the text, Blake Mycoskie shares stories of people who were able to triumph over their fears and ultimately achieve success. Throughout the chapter, the author highlights that fear is common, natural and actually even positive when constructed in a healthy way. On page 53 he says that the only way to overcome fear is “instead of focusing on fear itself, which you cannot control, focus on what you can control: your actions.”

 

Using examples from the text and from your personal experiences, tell us in what ways is fear a good thing? What tools does a person need to have to overcome fears? Have you ever been in a situation when you were either propelled or paralyzed by fear? How did you learn and grow from this experience?

 

You should log on and provide your response by 12pm on Friday, July 14, 2012. As was the case this week, the best response will be selected to receive a $50 which will be added to your PhilaU Campus Card or a FREE pair of TOMS shoes. You should log on to https://sp.philau.edu/blogs/Events/FYESummerReading/default.aspx.

To participate, simply log on using your PhilaU username and password (should be the same login information that you use for your email WebAdvisor portal). If for some reason you have problems logging in to post your response, please email HelpDesk@PhilaU.edu for assistance.

Summer Reading Blog- Tell us your story and win a pair of TOMS or $50!

As an institutional expectation, all new students are asked to read Start Something That Matters by Blake Mycoskie before the start of your fall 2012 semester.

Once again, congratulations on your acceptance to Philadelphia University class of 2016! We are excited about your arrival on August 16, 2012 for the kick-off of
New Student Orientation. But, we do not want to wait until then to engage you and your peers in conversation.

At START you all received our summer reading book, Start Something That Matters, by Blake Mycoskie. Throughout the summer, Philadelphia University will sponsor a weekly blog conversation and contest about Start Something That Matters and its core principles. Week one is now underway and the following is a prompt in which we would like you to respond by 12pm on Friday July 7, 2012.

The first principle Mycoskie highlights is the importance of finding your own personal story. This week, we are asking you to tell us your story! What drives you? What are your passions? What are the things that make you who you are? Knowing the answers to these questions will be the keys to your success here at PhilaU. As Mycoskie says, “if you organize your life around your passion, you can turn your passion into your story and then turn your story into something bigger- something that matters” (36). 

The best response to this week’s prompt will be selected to receive a $50 which will be added to your PhilaU Campus Card or a pair of TOMS shoes. In order to be eligible, you must log on to this blog with your PhilaU username and password and provide your response by 12pm on Friday July 7, 2012. If for some reason you have problems logging in to post your response, please email HelpDesk@PhilaU.edu for assistance.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Congratulations again on your acceptance to Philadelphia University!
As an institutional expectation, all new students are asked to read Start Something That Matters by Blake Mycoskie before the start of your fall 2012 semester.

While the book features the history of TOMS, one of the fastest-growing shoe companies in the world, Mycoskie weaves in lessons learned from other socially responsible--and inspiring--enterprises such as method, charity:water, FEED Projects, and TerraCycle. Each organization demonstrates how entrepreneurs can find profit and meaning at the same time. The messages implicit in TOMS One for One TM movement, and those of the other social entrepreneurs featured in the text, reflect important lessons for new students: find your story, face your fears, be resourceful without resources, keep it simple, build trust, and giving is good business.

Mycoskie, founder and Chief Shoe Giver of TOMS, tells the story behind the revolutionary One for One TM movement which gives away a pair of shoes to a child in need for each pair of shoes TOMS sold. The One for One TM business model has been expanded to TOMS Eyewear, and now to our summer reading program. For every book Mycoskie sells, a new children’s book will be provided to a child in need.

As a new student at Philadelphia University you are introduced to the Summer Reading during your visit to campus during the summer START program. Please be prepared to discuss Start Something That Matters in your classes, residence halls, and special programs that you are involved in, as many professors and program directors will integrate this text into beginning assignments and activities.

But, we don’t want to wait until then to engage you and your peers in conversation about Start Something That Matters, our summer reading!

As such, Philadelphia University’s First Year Experience Program is sponsoring a weekly blog about Start Something That Matters. The first blog competition will begin Monday, July 2, 2012; you should log on to this blog site using your uniqie PhilaU username and password and post your critique by Friday, July 7, 2012. The best post will be selected to receive a pair of TOMS shoes! Each week through mid August, a different post will be selected as a recipient of pair of TOMS shoes, so post your thoughts for a chance to win each week.

If you have any questions about the summer reading, or the First Year Experience program don't hesitate to email us at FYE@PhilaU.edu or contact us at (215) 951-2634.

For technical assistance, such as problems logging in to this site, contact the Help Desk during office hours, from 9am-5pm on Mondays through Fridays at (215) 951-4648 or via email at HelpDesk@PhilaU.edu.

Enjoy the summer reading selection, and we look forward to your insights about Start Something That Matters.

Please Note: Both the Reading Guide and the Library Resource page for the summer reading are linked from this blog site.
Week 4 of the Summer Blog now underway - Submit your final post by Fri., Aug. 12 to win $50

Congratulations to Rachel Ko for her interpretation and perspective of the family dynamics throughout the text. She saw, and effectively communicated, a connection between the debate of publishing Henrietta's name with the immortal cells and how it had an impact on the Lack's family and their relationship with one another.

Rachel
will receive a $50 added to her PhilaU campus card.  She along other students (recipients of past and the final weekly post) will be recognized at the Summer Reading Group Discussions held during New Student Orientation on Friday, August 19 from 11:30am-12:30pm which will be led by a faculty/staff member and upper-class student.

This year, all students in the First Year Writing Seminar will participate in a common assignment that, using Henrietta Lacks as a jumping off point, asks you to consider how your own beliefs are connected to your new city, Philadelphia. This week’s blog is a preview of that assignment.  In the beginning of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Skloot talks about how her long-term research project with the Lackses challenged her confidence and her determination:  “While trying to make sense of the history of cell culture and the complicated ethical debate surrounding the use of human tissues in research, I’d be accused of conspiracy and slammed into a wall both physically and metaphorically, and I’d eventually find myself on the receiving end of something that looked a lot like an exorcism. I eventually [met] Deborah, who would turn out to be one of the strongest and most resilient women I’d ever known. We’d form a deep personal bond, and slowly, without realizing it, I’d become a character in her story, and she in mine. […] The Lackses challenged everything I thought I knew about faith, science, journalism, and race.” (6-7).

 

Our question for you is in two parts: First, what do you think contributed to Skloot’s determination to finish the project, in spite of the challenges she describes? Her research project wasn’t easy, by any means. Why do you think she persevered? How do you know? Second, is there any inherent value in having what you know, challenged? How does confronting difficult information—whether by choice, (like Skloot), or not (like the Lackses)—affect how you see the world? 

 

You should log on and provide your response by 10am on Friday, August 12, 2011.  As has been the case, the best response will be selected to receive a $50 which will be added to your PhilaU Campus Card.  You should log on to https://sp.philau.edu/blogs/Events/FYESummerReading/default.aspx.  To participate, simply log on using your PhilaU username and password (should be the same login information that you use for your email WebAdvisor portal).  If for some reason you have problems logging in to post your response, please email HelpDesk@PhilaU.edu for assistance.

Week 3 of the Summer Blog now underway - Submit your post by Fri., Aug. 5 to win $50 

Congratulations to Nicole Vital, for her lendings of Russian scientists, and her understanding of some African American struggle in medical care fields present day.  Nicole will receive a $50 added to her PhilaU campus card.  She along other students (recipients of upcoming weekly posts) will be recognized at the Summer Reading Group Discussions held during New Student Orientation on Friday, August 19 from 11:30am-12:30pm which will be led by a faculty/staff member and upper-class student.

To help you prepare for the discussions with faculty and upper class mentors, Philadelphia University is continuing a
weekly blog about The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. Week three is underway and asks you, as a critical reader of the text, to critique the book from a concept of family dynamics and relationships.  Skloot quotes a text that reads “Helen Lane, it seems, never lived.  But Henrietta Lacks did, long protected by the pseudonym Helen Lane (page 176).”  Why do you suppose Dr. Gey didn’t want Henrietta's real name published? If reporters published Henrietta's real name, how would the lives of her relatives been different? Do you think it was right to withhold Henrietta's name from the press?  Why do you think reporters wanted to write a "human interest story" about the woman whose cells were used in medical research?  Was it fair to the Henrietta’s living relatives?

You should log on and provide your response by 10am on Friday, August 5, 2011.  As was the case this week, the best response will be selected to receive a $50 which will be added to your PhilaU Campus Card.  To participate, simply log on using your PhilaU username and password (should be the same login information that you use for your email WebAdvisor portal).  If for some reason you have problems logging in to post your response, please email
HelpDesk@PhilaU.edu for assistance.

Week 2 of the Summer Blog now underway - Submit your post by Fri., July 29 to win $50 

We hope the remainder of your summer continues to fair you well.  There was an active first week of postings, all of which were very insightful and well written.  For those that posted, thank you!  For those that didn’t, please join the summer reading discussion!

 

Congratulations to Brittany Buckmire whose submission was selected for her thought provoking and convincing argument and using of specific examples to do so.  Brittany will receive a $50 added to her PhilaU campus card.  She along other students (recipients of upcoming weekly posts) will be recognized at the Summer Reading Group Discussions held during New Student Orientation on Friday, August 19 from 11:30am-12:30pm which will be led by a faculty/staff member and upper-class student.

 

To help you prepare for the discussions with faculty and upper class mentors, Philadelphia University is sponsoring a weekly blog about The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. Week two is underway and asks you, as a critical reader of the text, to critique the book from a social justice and racial-identity perspective.  Ms. Skloot writes with particular sensitivity and grace about the history of race and medicine in America. Black oral history, she points out, is full of stories about ‘night doctors,’ men who could pluck black patients off the streets to experiment on their bodies. There was some truth behind those tales.”

 

In thinking of situations like the above another topic that may come to mind is the case of the Tuskegee STD study.  How would you explain the Tuskegee syphilis study to someone who has never heard of it before?  What kind of impact do you think this study had on healthcare and prevention in the African-American community?  How did the Tuskegee study, along with the practices illuminated in The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks contribute to a relationship of mistrust between doctors, along with others with authority, and the African American community?  Do you think this contributes to a present day reluctance among segments of the African American community to access health care as readily as Caucasian communities do?

 

You should log on and provide your response by 10am on Friday, July 29, 2010.  As was the case this week, the best response will be selected to receive a $50 which will be added to your PhilaU Campus Card.  You should log on to https://sp.philau.edu/blogs/Events/FYESummerReading/default.aspx. 

To participate, simply log on using your PhilaU username and password (should be the same login information that you use for your email WebAdvisor portal).  If for some reason you have problems logging in to post your response, please email
HelpDesk@PhilaU.edu for assistance.

Week 1 of the Summer Blog now underway - Submit your post by 10am on Fri., July 21 to win $50

We are excited about your arrival on Aug. 18, 2011 for the kick-off of New Student Orientation.  But, we don’t want to wait until then to engage you and your peers in conversation about The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, our summer reading.

Philadelphia University is sponsoring a weekly blog about The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.  Week one is underway and the following is a prompt in which we would like you to provide your response by 10am on Friday July 22, 2011

Deborah says “But I always have thought it was strange, if our mother cells done so much for medicine, how come her family can’t afford to see no doctors? Don’t make no sense” (page 9).  Should the family be financially compensated for the HeLa cells?  If so, who do you believe that money should come from?  Do you feel that Lacks’s deserve health insurance even though they can’t afford it? How would you respond if you were in their situation?

The best response to this week’s prompt will be selected to receive a $50 which will be added to your PhilaU Campus Card.  You should log on to this blog and provide your response by 10am on Friday July 22, 2011. 

To participate, s
imply log on using your PhilaU username and password (should be the same login information that you use for your email WebAdvisor portal).  If for some reason you have problems logging in to post your response, please email
HelpDesk@PhilaU.edu for assistance.

We look forward to hearing from you!

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