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MEDIA CONTACT: Toni Wolf
561-297-3029, twolf4@fau.edu

FAU Student Collects More than 8,900 Books for Class Project

            DAVIE, FL (January 18, 2011) – Carly Feduniec, a graduate student in Florida Atlantic University’s College of Education,  has collected more than 8,900 books through a class service-learning project to benefits students at Westwood Heights Elementary and Somerset Academy Village Charter School in Broward County. 
        “I never dreamed that we would get anything close to what we got,” said Feduniec.  “My class at FAU really opened my eyes to the challenges that many students face regarding literacy, and I realized I taught at a school that could gather its resources and help other schools.”
        A reading teacher at Falcon Cove Middle School in Weston, Feduniec became aware of educational disparities between affluent and low-income schools after reading author, educator and activist Jonathan Kozol’s 2005 book, The Shame of the Nation: the Restoration of Apartheid Schooling in America, for a reading practicum class taught by Philomena Marinaccio-Keckel, Ph.D., assistant professor of teaching and learning at FAU’s Davie campus.  Kozol’s book focused on the desegregation of American schools and the achievement gap between children based on income.
        Feduniec engaged Falcon Cove students who belong to the Future Florida Educators of America organization, as well as the principal and teachers of the school to collect gently used books for the two low-income schools, chosen because 90 percent of their student population received free or reduced lunches.    
        “When I heard that a complete stranger wanted to donate books to our school library I wasn’t expecting much,” said Lara Silva, principal of the Somerset Academy Village. “When all the books that were collected in the book drive arrived at the school, I was simply overwhelmed by the sheer number collected.  Our library was transformed from a barren room with outdated books to overflowing shelves of interesting novels and storybooks.  Our students were amazed and excited, and we are truly grateful to have benefitted from the generosity of so many.” 

-FAU-

About Florida Atlantic University:

Florida Atlantic University opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University serves more than 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students on seven campuses and sites. Building on its rich tradition as a teaching university, with a world-class faculty, FAU hosts 10 colleges: the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts & Letters, the College of Business, the College for Design and Social Inquiry, the College of  Education, the College of  Engineering & Computer Science, the Graduate College, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science. For more information, visit www.fau.edu .

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