Program History

SJSU's Campus Reading Program was launched in 2005 in response to a call from the Academic Senate to build a culture of reading at SJSU (see SS-F04-2). Each year since then, a volunteer group of faculty and staff have selected a book that the entire campus is encouraged to read and discuss. Small group discussions and special events help extend the conversation throughout the academic year. 

Beginning with Barbara Ehrenrich’s Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America, the SJSU campus reading program has featured a diverse array of authors, including Khaled Hosseini, ZZ Packer, Sherman Alexie, Sonia Sotomayor, Dave Eggers, and Bryan Stevenson. A complete list of books selected appears below.

Now in its fifteenth year, SJSU’s campus reading program remains committed to fostering campus-wide discussion about critical issues, particularly those that relate to social justice, equity, and inclusion. We hope that you will join us by reading this year’s book and participating in the exciting events we have planned!

2019
Spare Parts: Four Undocumented Teenagers, One Ugly Robot, and the Battle for the American Dream. Joshua Davis. 

2018
The John Carlos Story: The Sports Moment That Changed the WorldJohn Carlos, Dave Zirin.

2017
Hotdogs and Hamburgers: Unlocking Life's Potential by Inspiring Literacy at Any Age.Rob Shindler.

2016
Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and RedemptionBryan Stevenson. 

True American: Murder and Mystery in TexasAnand Giridharas. (spring book)

2015
The CircleDave Eggers.

2014
My Beloved WorldSonia Sotomayor.

2013
Escape from Camp 14Blaine Harden.

2012
Little PrincesConor Grennan.

2011
The Immortal Life of Henrietta LacksRebecca Skloot.

2010
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time IndianSherman Alexie.

2009
Color of the SeaJohn Hamamura.

2008
Water for ElephantsSara Gruen.

2007
Drinking Coffee ElsewhereZZ Packer.

2006
The Kite RunnerKhaled Hosseini.

2005
Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in AmericaBarbara Ehrenreich.