University of Vermont

The Honors College

Author Brooke Hauser

New Kids

Over the summer, incoming first-year students to the Honors College read Brooke Hauser's book The New Kids and were asked to write a paper on the book that they brought to the first day of class in HCOL 085, their first-year HCOL seminar. And before we'd really even had time to all introduce ourselves to each other in that class, they all had the opportunity to meet Brooke Hauser herself. Ms. Hauser was our writer-in-residence for the first week of the semester.

The New Kids traces the senior year of a group of students at Brooklyn's International High School at Prospect Heights. To research the book, Ms. Hauser "embedded" herself at the high school for several months, becoming a trusted observer and a confidante to a number of the students, all of whom are immigrants, all of whom were learning English as a second (or third, or fourth) language. The book is a moving exploration of the ways in which the high school experiences of these students look, on the one hand, so very much like the experiences of the majority population of American high school students (in applying to college, in getting ready for prom) and yet, on the other hand, are contextualized in lives that do not look much like the ones the majority of high school seniors are living.

Ms. Hauser gave a talk on Tuesday, August 28th to the entire first-year class (and guests!), and then spoke with all the first-year students in their individual seminars. It was a very stimulating way to begin the semester, a great to start to what promises to be a great year with a very engaged group of students!

Brooke's own website includes a wonderful narrative of her visit at UVM

Last modified October 26 2012 09:48 AM