Common Intellectual Experiences

In addition to high impact instructional experiences and pedagogical research, faculty and the campus community at large are engaging in large-scale discussions about issues challenging community colleges in general and Queensborough in particular.


The Common Read is a Common Intellectual Experience that promotes integrative learning across the curriculum. This is accomplished through voluntary participation of faculty, both on campus and in local high schools, who introduce the text to their students and support the reading with co-curricular events. The events provide an opportunity for increased social and academic engagement while enhancing student learning outside of the classroom.

2014-2015 Common Read
Featured text: Until I Say Goodbye: My Year of Living with Joy, by Susan Spencer-Wendel with Bret Witter

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot

Queensborough faculty members and their students will read Until I Say Goodbye: My Year of Living with Joy in classes in the spring 2015 semester. They will be joined by classes from Bayside High School, Thomas A. Edison Career and Technical Education High School and the CUNY Language Immersion Program (CLIP). All students will participate in co-curricular activities.

Until I Say Goodbye: My Year of Living with Joy is a moving and inspirational memoir by Susan Spencer-Wendel. She was a vibrant forty-four year old journalist, wife and mother of three young children who learned that she had ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), an irreversible condition that systematically destroys the nerves that power the muscles, in June of 2011. Despite her diagnosis, this woman of immense strength and spirit decided to make every day count. Her memoir invites readers to join her on her journey, sharing her guiding desire to “dwell on how wonderful it is to be alive.” Her remarkable story has spread across the world even though the author died in June of 2014, at the age of forty-seven.

The theme of this year’s Common Read initiative is “empathy”   We hope not only to share the author’s story, but to prompt the campus community to think outside of themselves, to imagine living in a situation different from their own, promoting an increased awareness and willingness to aid others.

For additional information regarding this initiative please contact Ms. Susan Madera, Academic Program Manager for High Impact Practices and Common Read Coordinator at  or Dr. Beth Counihan, Associate Professor, English, and Common Read Book Club Coordinator, at


Common Read Book Club Dates and Times

Wednesday, October 15, 2014  3:00 to 5:00 pm
Common Read Book Club Meeting I
Kupferberg Holocaust Resource Center & Archives, Classroom

Wednesday, November 5, 2014  12:10 to 2:00 pm
Common Read Book Club Meeting II

Library Basement, Room 6
Guest Speakers: Dr. Anthony Monahan

Monday, November 17, 2014  3:00 to 5:00 pm
Common Read Book Club Meeting III

Kupferberg Holocaust Resource Center & Archives, Classroom

Wednesday, December 10, 2014  3:00 to 5:00 pm
Common Read Book Club Meeting IV

Library Building, Room 313

Common Read Events for Spring 2014

Week 1 Events (March 2 - 6, 2015)


Week 2 Events (March 9 - 13, 2015)

Week 3 Events (March 16 - 20, 2015)





Go to Common Read Past Events