I am Connected. I am Auburn.

Auburn Connects!, Auburn University's common book program, was started in Fall 2010 as a way to provide incoming first-year students with a common educational experience to introduce them to the Auburn family. First-year students are asked to purchase and read the book prior to coming to campus in August. The book is then incorporated into Welcome Week, academic classes, and programming throughout the fall semester including a visit by the book's author. The author is invited to Auburn to speak to the Auburn campus and local community and participate in a book-signing. Campus offices, academic departments, and student clubs and organizations plan social and educational activities around the themes of the book while many faculty members choose to incorporate the book in to their curriculum during fall and spring terms.

The Auburn community is encouraged to participate in programming made available throughout the fall semester including service projects, discussion groups, interactive programming, and guest speakers. Stay up to date on events by following Auburn Connects! on Facebook or viewing the events calendar online.


Selection of the Common Book

This year's book, Half a Life, went through many stages before becoming our official Auburn Connects! selection. Books were nominated by the Auburn community for consideration for the 2015-16 common book. The nominations were reviewed by a committee of faculty, staff, and students and a small group of nominees were recommended to the Provost. The Provost narrowed down that group of nominees to two choices and the student body voted for the official common book during the Spring Student Government Association elections.

For a text to be considered as a common book, it must meet the following criteria:

  • Relevant to issues related to first-year students and which may appeal to the larger campus community
  • Rich in concept and content that will challenge students to gain new perspectives
  • Contemporary and engaging
  • Appeal to males and females from all backgrounds
  • Author or subject is available to visit campus
  • Have potential for strong social and academic programming opportunities


Auburn Connects! Committee

The Auburn Connects! Committee is comprised of faculty, staff, university administrators, and students. This committee oversees the direction of the Auburn Connects! common book program, implements new initiatives related to our stated goals, and reviews all possible common book options for recommendation to the Provost.

  • Dr. Melissa Baumann Director, Auburn Connects! and Honors College; Assistant Provost, Undergraduate Studies; Professor, Materials Engineering
  • Valerie Bagley Coordinator, Auburn Connects! and Learning Communities
  • Scott Bishop  Curator of Education, Jule Collins Smith Museum
  • Marcia Boosinger  Associate Dean, Auburn University Libraries
  • Phillip Brantley  Undergraduate Student, Philosophy
  • Ian Colmer  Graduate Student, English
  • Dr. George Crandell  Professor and Associate Dean, Graduate Studies
  • Dr. Abby Langham  Director, Assessment and Strategic Plan, Student Affairs
  • William Palmer  Graduate Student, English
  • Dr. Paul Patterson  Associate Dean, Agriculture
  • Dr. Constance Relihan  Associate Provost, Undergraduate Studies
  • Caitlin Sullivan  Graduate Student, James Harrison School of Pharmacy
  • Dr. Octavia Tripp   Associate Professor, Curriculum and Teaching, Education
  • Chris Wyckoff  Assistant Director of Academic Initiatives, First Year Experience
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