Posted by Amy Schlumpf Manion on January 28, 2013
The Phillips Library staff is passionate about reading and knows many Aurora University students are, too. To encourage dialogue among students and the AU community, the librarians started a Virtual Book Club through Facebook.
Unlike traditional book clubs, Phillips Library’s Virtual Book Club does not have a specified meeting place and time. It is open to everyone, and book club members are not required to read assigned books by a deadline. Those interested can participate at their convenience on the Phillips Library Facebook page. Participants simply answer questions about books they have read or about reading in general.
The Virtual Book Club began on January 15, 2013, and librarians are currently posting one question per day for the first month. During the first month, the club is also being used as a contest for the Phillips Library’s annual READ poster model selection. All current AU students who participate in the Virtual Book Club at least once from January 15-February 14, 2013 will be entered for their chance to appear on one of this year’s READ posters. Following the contest, two students will be chosen and photographed to appear on their own poster.
“I’m surprised at the level of participation we’ve already had,” said Amy Schlumpf Manion, Information Services Librarian. “After only ten days, I guess we can claim 56 ‘members’—that’s how many different people have answered our questions. A core group of members have answered every question so far. Most respondents are students, but we’ve also seen answers from our faculty, staff, and administrators, and even some alumni.”
There have been a variety of questions that received great response, including questions about members’ favorite books as a child, the first book that made them cry, or the best book they’ve ever read for class.
“We plan to continue the Virtual Book Club after the READ contest is over, but on a weekly, rather than a daily basis,” said Manion. “The AU community is really enjoying this. One student messaged me after the first day and said she loved this idea and couldn’t wait for more questions. Now if we could only figure out a way to serve virtual refreshments!”
Like the Phillips Library Facebook page to join the conversation now.