PRESS ROOM

Independence Matters: Wild River Books Launches Open Admissions on Sunday, October 22 at Philadelphia’s Mermaid Inn with Host Roger LaMay of WXPN

Author Ned Bachus gathers expert panel in launch of Open Admissions, a memoir that celebrates the underappreciated resource of community colleges in building independence

September 19, 2017


Roger LaMay, Judith Gay, Clark DeLeon, and Ned Bachus

Roger LaMay, WXPN General Manager; Judith Gay, Community College of Philadelphia Vice President of Strategic Initiatives; Clark DeLeon, Philadelphia Inquirer former Columnist, Montgomery Community College Alumnus; Ned Bachus, Author of Open Admissions, Community College of Philadelphia former alumnus, counselor and teacher.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Kimberly Nagy
kim@wildriverpublishing.com

Independence Matters: Wild River Books Launches Open Admissions on October 22nd at Philadelphia’s Mermaid Inn with Host Roger LaMay of WXPN

Author Ned Bachus gathers expert panel in launch of Open Admissions, a memoir that celebrates the underappreciated resource of community colleges in building independence 

PHILADELPHIA–September 19, 2017–On October 22, 2017, in an “All Things Indie” event, independent book publisher Wild River Books will launch award-winning author and teacher Ned Bachus’s Open Admissions: What Teaching at Community College Taught Me About Learning at the Mermaid Inn with host and long-time supporter of independent music Roger LaMay, WXPN’s general manager.

The free Sunday afternoon event at the Mermaid Inn (snacks will be served with a cash bar) will feature an author reading from Ned Bachus, an alumnus of Community College of Philadelphia (CCP) and former counselor and teacher there, along with an expert panel including Judy Gay, CCP Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and Chief of Staff, and Clark DeLeon, long-time Philadelphia Inquirer columnist and Montgomery County Community College alumnus and teacher.

Fostering student independence is a recurrent theme in Bachus’s memoir, Open Admissions, which has been praised by author and Chronicle of Higher Education contributor Gina Barecca as “brilliant, engaging, and instructive … both moving and personal,” and described by Roger LaMay as a “love song to the promise and accessibility of affordable education.”

Story after story demonstrates that the resources, guidance, and support offered at community colleges all across the country matter far more than we’ve been led to believe.  One of Bachus’s last students, a single parent who as a teenager had been on both sides of shooting crimes, told him, “I’m doing this for my little daughter.”  But his success benefits all of us. As Bachus writes, “I taught writing. But really, I taught independence.”

“Every time former community college students return to campus with stories of a higher degree, a good job, and maybe a new address for their family, their teachers know beyond doubt that those students had learned independence,” notes Bachus in his account of teaching at CCP.  “On such visits, students and I might have discussed writing or literature, but we surely talked also about independence. It was at the heart of every story about their careers, their children, their plans. Independence means that you can plan.”

A self-described bad student from a working-class single-parent family, Bachus spent his first two years after high school at Community College of Philadelphia. In time, his mother, wife, and son also studied there, and his daughter worked there.  After working for nearly four decades at his alma mater, he began the fall semester of 2011 knowing that before its end he must decide if he will take early retirement or remain indefinitely in his dream job.

About Ned Bachus: During his four-decade career at Community College of Philadelphia, Ned Bachus won multiple teaching awards, including the Christian and Mary Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching.  His fiction has been anthologized, published in literary magazines, and presented at the Writing Aloud Series at Philadelphia’s InterAct Theatre, and has earned him fellowships from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and a residency at Ireland’s Cill Rialaig Project, where he began writing Open Admissions.  His Fleur-de-Lis Press book of short stories, City of Brotherly Love, received a 2013 IPPY Gold Medal for Literary Fiction.  A singer-songwriter, his songs have been recorded by other artists and performed on National Public Radio programs including A Prairie Home Companion.  He sings and plays percussion as a member of the Louisiana-style roots rock band Sacred CowBoys.

FREE Event: Independence Matters: Wild River Books Launches Open Admissions on October 22nd with at Philadelphia’s Mermaid Inn with Host Roger LaMay of WXPN

Who: Roger LaMay (General Manager of WXPN) will host the event with panelists Judy Gay, Community College of Philadelphia Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and Chief of Staff; Clark DeLeon, long-time Philadelphia Inquirer columnist and Montgomery County Community College alumnus and teacher; and Ned Bachus, author of Open Admissions, CCP alumnus and former counselor and teacher.

What: Wild River Books Launches Open Admissions: What Teaching at Community College Taught Me About Learning

When: October 22, 2017 at 2 p.m.

Where: The Mermaid Inn, 7673 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, located at the intersection of Germantown Avenue, Winston Road, and Mermaid Lane. Snacks will be provided.  Cash bar.

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