Ten college students will be present Saturday, November 18 to sign copies of their recently published book, “Untold, Unseen, Unheard: Perspectives on Immigration.” The book release will be at Make The Road Pennsylvania, 501 Washington St, Reading from 2 – 4 p.m. Copies of the book will be available to purchase at the event. Books are also available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. An open mic will follow the release at which attendees can share their own stories or music.
The participating students were selected through the Writing Wrongs community journalism program, which provides them a unique opportunity to practice journalism outside of the classroom while simultaneously performing community service by raising awareness about specific social issues in these communities through a print book. Their work is also published online at seekreporttruth.com.
This is the third journalism event Writing Wrongs has hosted. In 2015, the inaugural group of nine students from four different colleges explored the issue of homelessness at the Opportunity House, Reading, Pa. Last year, seven students from six different schools visited Easy Does It, Inc. drug and alcohol treatment facility, Leesport, Pa., to shed light on addiction by talking with those residents and sharing their stories.
This year’s group of 11 students, representing Cabrini University, Franklin & Marshall College, Kutztown University of Pennsylvania, Haverford College, Millersville University, Northampton Community College, and Shippensburg University, volunteered their time and skills on Labor Day weekend to interview, photograph, and record a dozen Latino immigrants who reside in Berks and Lancaster counties. Their stories about their journey to the U.S. and their lives here provide a compassionate perspective on the current issue of immigration and undocumented people who are our coworkers, neighbors, and friends.
“The topic of this year’s project hits close to home for me, as my father and grandmother are immigrants from Thailand, and one of my aunts is Muslim,” said Carlee Nilphai, Millersville University student and Writing Wrongs Staff Writer. “This was another huge reason I felt like I had to be a part of this. I was raised to be accepting and open-minded to things that I may not know or understand.”
Writing Wrongs has 501(c)(3) nonprofit status through its fiscal sponsor, Humanitarian Social Innovations. This program is supported in part by the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. The 2017 program was also funded in part through a grant from Berks Arts Council and the Wyomissing Foundation.