The idea behind the initiative is to bring people together through novels, giving new students something in common to talk about from day one and helping them to feel more welcome in their new environment.
Reflecting on the evening and meeting Gail Honeyman, UWS BA Business Level 7 student, Lydia Zimunya said: “I thoroughly enjoyed the Big Read event and listening to the author answer our questions and perform her reading. I’m hugely supportive of the initiative, which has already brought students closer together and given us something relatable to talk about. It can often be daunting starting university, so having some common ground with our peers in the form of a good book from the get-go is a really great idea.”
Dr Claire Carney, Associate Vice-Principal Education UWS, headed up the project, she said: “Student wellbeing is of primary concern here at UWS and this initiative aims to support students transitioning to university by providing them with something to talk about and bond over from day one.
“In choosing our ‘Big Read’ book, alongside our partners at Kingston, and Wolverhampton universities, we explored a range of different novels before settling on this one as it tackles important issues that face all students of today and it focuses on the inspirational and transformational power of small acts of kindness.”