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                                    EXEMPLARY WRITING AND ART BY STUDENTS SINGLED OUT

                                                     IN ONE BOOK, ONE COLLEGE AWARDS 

A woman's body with a computer monitor on her head stands amidst a field of red and green cells on the ground and extending from a tree.
                 LANEY BAHAN
A black and white depiction of cellular fibers that resemble creatures in outer space.

Art Instructor Erin O’Shea handed out awards to Barrett, who produced his work for the printmaking class; Bahan, who created her piece in the Color Theory class; and May, who composed her depiction in the 2D Design class.

More than 500 students, faculty, staff, and community members attended the May 3 event, which culminated in a dialogue with members of Lacks’ family that focused on issues revealed by The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. Calling her visit to campus a “lovely and humbling experience,” Victoria Baptiste, Henrietta's great-granddaughter and a registered nurse in Baltimore, urged Saddleback students to “be/do something great no matter your age.”  Alfred Carter Jr., a grandson of Henrietta, also shared his observations about her legacy. An ex-Marine, he's currently the president and CEO of the Henrietta Lacks House of Healing, which offers transitional housing for disabled men and women suffering from substance abuse.

“Our college’s enthusiastic response to the book, coupled with the warm reception for Henrietta Lacks’ descendants, reaffirms our commitment to shared literacy and learning,” said Bruce Gilman, professor of English and a member of the One Book, One College Committee.

Every year, the One Book, One College Committee, whose members include Gilman, Hayter, O’Shea, Claire Cesareo, Jane Horlings, Irene Renault, Valerie Senior, and Lydia Tamara, selects a book for the campus community to read as a way to promote multidisciplinary dialogue about local and global issues. Lectures, panel discussions, art installations, and performances are held throughout the semester, culminating in a presentation by a guest speaker connected to the book.

Alfred Carter Jr. and Victoria Baptiste, desendants of Henrietta Lacks, pose with student Janiel Victorino at a book signing.
Photo by Jane Horlings

Alfred Carter Jr. and Victoria Baptiste (right), descendants of Henrietta Lacks, with Saddleback College student Janiel Victorino at book signing following their dialogue with the campus community.

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