Common Reading Program


Program Description and Goals

New first-year students received a copy of the selected text during your Advising and Registration Days session, giving you the opportunity to read the book by the start of your first semester at St. Cloud State. The purpose of this program is to provide a common academic experience for all new first-year students, which integrates both curricular and co-curricular activities throughout the year. In addition to events around the book at your New Student Orientation in August, many of you will use the book in at least one class you take during your first year, and all of you will have the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of programs throughout 2013-14 related to the book and issues it raises.

Your participation in the common reading program will:

  • introduce you to the nature of collegiate academic life.
  • cultivate a sense of community with your new home at SCSU.
  • help you develop connections with faculty and staff  and other students at the university.
  • get you involved in campus activities with related programs and events.
  • enrich your classroom experience with an shared intellectual experience that cuts across courses and co-curricular opportunities.

About the Book

Little Princes book coverYour Common Reading for 2013-14 is Conor Grennan’s Little Princes.

Little Princes: One Man’s Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal is the story of Conor Grennan’s personal and purposeful transformation that began with 3 months volunteering in an Little Princes Orphanage in Godawari, Nepal. In the wake of a tumultuous civil war in Nepal, Grennan found himself surrounded by rambunctious and resilient children in the country’s capital city of Kathmandu. He slowly came to discover that rather than being orphans of the civil war, however, they were victims of child traffickers, who had promised their families in remote villages that the children would be taken – for a hefty fee – to safety and the opportunity of a good education in the capital.

This book chronicles the evolution of Grennan’s commitment to reuniting these and other children with their families. You will read the story of how he risked his life in the legendary mountains of Nepal to follow his first lead on the location of one family. What had begun as a year-long trip around the globe, with what was supposed to be a short stay in Nepal has led Grennan to his life’s work. Grennan’s story is a testament to what the passionate faith and commitment of one person is capable of overcoming.

This book will open the doors to rich conversations you will experience as a college student at St. Cloud State University.

For more information, please see these two videos:

About the Author

Conor Grennan spent eight years at the EastWest Institute (EWI) in Prague and Brussels, from 1996-2004. While at EWI he developed and managed numerous projects focusing on issues related to peace, security and community development, including harmonizing the anti-trafficking policy at the highest levels of government in the EU. When he learned the story of how the children in Little Princes had been trafficked, Grennan started Next Generation Nepal, an American NGO dedicated to reuniting trafficked children with their families. To date, Next Generation Nepal has reconnected over 350 families with children they feared had been lost to them forever. More information about Grennan’s organization can be found at


Other Resources