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May 30, 2019

In episode 39 of Our College, Your Voices you heard unrehearsed and unscripted excerpts from the April 26 gathering of a book discussion group. The group was formed this spring by Professor Rebecca Keen from Richmond and Dr. Russ Baker from Systems Office to discuss a rather controversial memoir written by J.D. Vance entitled Hillbilly Elegy. It has been described by Bill Gates as “offer[ing] insights into some of the complex cultural and family issues behind poverty, the real magic lies in the story itself and Vance’s bravery in telling it.”

Each of the 19 Ivy Tech campuses were invited to send one representative to this book read group. The group met on April 12 and 26 and will have their final meeting on June 14. In this particular episode, we focused on chapters 6-10 of the book. Each chapter discussion was facilitated by one of our participants.


Call To Action

Dr. Monroe has been mentioning in spring podcasts that this book read group had been formed. She invited listeners from across Ivy Tech to purchase the book and join in the discussion. If you have read the book, we would love to hear your perspectives on the discussion you heard today.

Have you experienced students at Ivy Tech who fit the description of coming from the culture and the values that Vance describes in the book? What do you think is relevant and helpful from this book for more effectively instructing and retaining our students? Send your thoughts and comments via Twitter or at the e-mail address


Get In Touch!

● You can reach out to the co-chairs of our panel:

● You can connect with Kara Monroe on twitter @KNMTweets

● You can connect with Anne Valentine on twitter @indypenny

● Reach out with show ideas, comments, or questions via twitter or at our email address - .

● Leave us a voice mail at 317-572-5049. Respond to the Call for Action, ask a question,

give a shout out to a colleague, or an episode suggestion.

  • Thanks to each of the panelists for participating in this book read group. Each of the participants were named at the end of the episode when Rebecca Keen read the show notes. 

● Check out show notes, listen to past episodes, and get instructions on how to access the

podcast on our website at

● Thanks as always to Jen Edds at The Brassy Broadcasting Company. Jen provides our theme music, recording, and post production services.