New York Times best-selling author Conor Grennan to speak at the university about his memoir, 'Little Princes,' the university's Common Book
October 30, 2013
New York Times best-selling author Conor Grennan will visit Virginia Tech on Monday, Nov. 11, to discuss this year’s Common Book, “Little Princes.”
Grennan will give a presentation in the auditorium of Burruss Hall, located at 800 Drillfield Dr. in Blacksburg, Va., beginning at 7:30 p.m. The event is open to the public and university community. Following his talk, Grennan will take questions and conclude the evening with a book signing.
In 2004, before his 30th birthday, Grennan planned a yearlong trip around the world, which began with a three-month obligation to volunteer at an orphanage in war-torn Nepal. He discovered many of the children there were not actually orphans – but had been taken from their homes by child traffickers. He gave up his plans for world travel and tried to reunite the children with their parents. “Little Princes” documents those efforts.
The Common Book Project began at Virginia Tech in 1998 to enrich the first-year experience and create a sense of community by discussing and learning from the same book. The Common Book is distributed to all first-year and transfer students.
“This personal and inspiring memoir has been central to an organic, shared experience on campus with the newest members of the Hokie Nation,” said Rachel Holloway, vice provost for undergraduate academic affairs. “Having Grennan come to campus is an exciting opportunity to open that dialogue even farther and keep our conversations flowing.”
Virginia Tech’s Common Book committee selected “Little Princes” as the university’s Common Book for 2013-14 because it challenged students and faculty to think globally and look for ways to make an impact.
“All of our Pathways to Success courses are using this memoir – from the STEM fields, to the humanities, and in between,” said Mary Ann Lewis, assistant provost for first year experiences. “It allows students and faculty to transcend disciplines and see how they – academically and personally – fit into the bigger picture.”
“Little Princes” is the university’s eighth Common Book.
Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.