Florida A&M University students donated books to the Eileen Warner November Book Drive spearheaded by English Professor Kendra Bryant.
The book drive was named after Eileen Warner, a FAMU Developmental Research School English teacher, who died in a car crash this summer. Warner partnered with members of the English Literary Guild and Bryant last year to collect books and discuss literacy with her students. Bryant believed it was appropriate to memorialize Warner through this book drive because of her passion for teaching and reading.
Bryant, and everyone who helped to execute this year’s drive, hope to make it an annual event.
“I would really love it if FAMU engages in this book drive every November,” Bryant said. “In lieu of collecting food for Thanksgiving, I thought it would be a good idea to collect books for our sister school. Maybe at some point the drive will collect enough books for other surrounding schools.”
Others who helped to organize the book drive such as FAMU English Literary Guild, LGBTQ Student Pride Union, Sociology Club and Marcus Garvey Club found it to be extremely rewarding.
Omar Stewart, president of the Sociology Club, said, “The most rewarding part of the drive has been the support given from all over campus. So many students and faculty have participated–and it's been fun hearing folks talk about books they read and enjoyed while in high school or explain why they're donating a particular title.”
Those who donated books were thankful to have the opportunity to give back through the book drive.
Jaronn Goodman, a graduate business administration student, said, “It is a great feeling to be able to give back to high school students in such a meaningful way, especially during the thanksgiving season. Reading is so important, so I was more than glad to donate a couple of books.”
More than 300 books were donated by FAMU students and faculty for the book drive. The books that were collected will shelve classroom libraries at FAMU DRS.
“I hoped the new books would encourage high school students to read more often aside from the texts they read via social media–so that they broaden and deepen their emotional, spiritual, and intellectual selves,” Bryant said.