UMO selects Charlotte author for Common Read book selection

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The University of Mount Olive has selected Kathy Izard’s 2017 Christopher Award Winner, “The Hundred Story Home,” as its 2020 Common Read book selection. 

Reading, discussing and writing about the novel will be a part of the curriculum for students enrolled in the First Year Experience course.

An award-winning graphic designer in Charlotte for 20 years, Izard had always believed in doing good and loving others. Although she regularly served in her community’s soup kitchen, her life seemed unfulfilled. In 2007, she quit her job, and began doing what seemed unimaginable…building homes for Charlotte’s homeless.

“Do you ever have the feeling that what you are doing isn’t what you are supposed to be doing,” Izard said.

Struggling with finding her own place in the world, Izard admits that she wrote the book not to convince readers to solve homelessness in their communities, but rather to help them solve the homelessness in themselves.

Izard is now an award-winning author and speaker.  

She has helped transform homelessness and mental health in Charlotte by helping fundraise and build, Moore Place and Hope Way.

According to Ashley Gayles, UMO director of First Year Experience and chair of the Common Read Selection Committee, students who read the book will get a realistic look at how mental health and homelessness can affect people.  

“After reading this book, I hope our students will be able to model their everyday lives to be blessings to others and to create ways to give back,” Gayles said.

UMO typically invites the Common Read author to campus for a face-to-face presentation with students. However, due to COVID-19, this year’s meeting will be held virtually on October 19 and 21.  

For more information contact Gayles at agayles@umo.edu.

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