QEP Student Talkback Event is March 1

News Date
author Kwoya Fagin Maples 2022 (2).jpeg

Pictured above is Kwoya Fagin Maples, the author of "Mend" (photo contributed).

'Talkback Event' with Author of "Mend" - Kwoya Fagin Maples - Sponsored by QEP

 - All part of a 'Common Core' reader initiative that helps build a "community" among the University's students and helps enable success. 

On March 1 at 11 a.m., an "Author-Talkback" event will take place in Alabama State University's Ralph David Abernathy auditorium where students will have the opportunity to meet Kwoya Fagin Maples, the author of "Mend," which is the book that freshmen taking ENG 132 are required to read.   

During the event, Maples will read from her acclaimed book and discuss her process in writing “Mend,” a work in which she gives life and a voice to the enslaved women—Anarcha, Betsey and Lucy—who were the victims of the tortuous gynecology experiments performed on them. The author will also answer questions about this work, her writing and creative process, and why she decided to tell this story, explained Dr. Rolanda Horn, coordinator of ASU's Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) in the Office of Institutional Effectiveness. 

"From a student learning and student success perspective, common readers have been proven to enhance the first-year experience for students at Alabama State University and at other schools across the nation," said Horn. "This type of interactive event allows an opportunity for students to have discussions with an author and thus help build a community idea around a common theme or concept. This initiative has gained popularity and is being used as a 'best practice' at many institutions."

The mission and purpose of the University's QEP is to help students in their transition from high school to college, which allows them to foster a sense of belonging, which in turn helps enhance their retention in school. 

ASU's Horn believes that this type of common core reader initiative helps build a "community" among the University's students, thereby fostering academic success.

"This initiative promotes the development of reflective writing skills, critical and analytical skill development, as well as research skills, which is the focus of the English 132 course," Horn stated. "Student learning and student success are the focus of the common reader initiative."


Dr. Horn explained that ASU's QEP is a required component of reaffirmation for accredited institutions by "The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges" (SACSCOC), which is the organization for the accreditation of degree-granting higher education institutions in the Southern states.  

Alabama State University is required to plan, develop and implement a QEP that focuses on student learning and student success. The March 1 "Author-Talkback" event is an example of the kind of programs the University organizes to comply with the SACSCOC requirement. 

"The goals of our QEP are to improve the persistence of our first-time students; strengthen skills to support academic success, such as reading; and increase the satisfaction of first-year students regarding their experience at ASU in their freshman year of studies," explained Horn. "We hope that programs such as our event on March 1 with author Kwoya Fagin Maples will contribute to a positive long-term impact, which will be evidenced in student retention, skill development and overall student satisfaction." 

News media contact: Kenneth Mullinax, 334-229-4104.