On May 30, the Utah System of Higher Education (USHE) participated in the KSL Read Today Summer Book Festival, which partnered with the Salt Lake City Police Department and the Five-O Fest. The local festival for youth and their families was held on the plaza of the Public Safety building in downtown Salt Lake City.
USHE used the opportunity to highlight its recently-published children’s book, Monte and the World of Possibilities, which encourages elementary-aged children to dream big about their future, and to include college in that dream. During the festival, children were encouraged to fill out a sign with what they want to be when they grow up (as illustrated in Monte). All participants in the activity received a copy of Monte and the World of Possibilities; over 300 books were distributed.
USHE published Monte and the World of Possibilities in October 2014. In the children’s book, the main character, Monte, has a lot of questions about the world around him, with one of them being, “Can I go to college?” In the end, he realizes that school, and college in particular, can help him follow his dreams. The book was developed for second and third graders, and an online toolkit of activities, complete with a PDF of the book, is available at no charge for teachers and parents to incorporate into their college discussions with students.
4,550 KSL Read Today volunteers shared the story with children in schools across the state last fall, and an additional 3,000 copies were distributed to libraries throughout Utah.