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Common Reading Program

New in 2019, the Faculty of Social Science and Humanities has introduced a common reading program to help students develop their critical reading, thinking and writing skills. A common reading program offers students a common text used across all courses in the common first-year program. These texts are usually timely and tap into issues of social, cultural and political importance. 

Secret Path

This year's Common Reading Program text is Secret Patha graphic novel by the late The Tragically Hip frontman Gord Downie and artist and author Jeff Lemire. The text tells the story of Chanie Wenjack, a 12-year-old boy who died trying to escape the Cecilia Jeffrey Residential School near Kenora, Ontario back in October 1966. 

  • Do I have to sign up for the Common Reading Program?
    No! All you have to do is attend the first-year courses in which you're registered!
  • Where can I find the text?
    Students can borrow a copy of Secret Path at the Social Science, Humanities and Education Library (downtown Oshawa campus location; 61 Charles Street Building, first floor), or at the North Oshawa Library (north Oshawa campus location, overlooking Polonsky Commons). You can also try your neighbourhood library. Bookstores such as Chapters and Indigo also carry the book, or you can order it from an online retailer as an e-book.
  • I've read the book; what's next?
    Make sure to check your syllabus as some courses will have assignments based on Secret Path
  • Are there any on-campus events related to the Common Reading Program?
    Yes! There are many exciting events related to Secret Path. Ontario Tech's Indigenous Education and Cultural Services also offers many activities throughout the year!