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    Thousands of Donated Books Blessed at Scranton

    Rev. Bernard R. McIlhenny, S.J., H’98, dean of admissions emeritus at The University of Scranton, blessed nearly 4,000 children’s books donated this year through the Panuska College of Professional Studies annual Blessing of the Books initiative. Since 2007, the annual book collection has distributed more than 35,000 books to children in need.
    December 12, 2019

    Rev. Bernard R. McIlhenny, S.J., H’98, dean of admissions emeritus at The University of Scranton, blessed the nearly 4,000 children’s books donated this year through the Panuska College of Professional Studies annual Blessing of the Books project. During the fall semester, Panuska College of Professional Studies first-year students collected books donated by members of the University community.  In addition, this year Melissa Menagh, Long Valley, New Jersey, a sophomore exercise science major, and her mother spearheaded a drive in her hometown that brought in 1,200 books. 

    Through the program, Panuska College of Professional Studies first-year students add a hand-written note to the donated books, which are then blessed and distributed through area organizations and children’s programs to promote literacy. This year the books will be distributed through The Valley Santa Project, the Scranton School District, the Friendship House, the University’s Belize and other service trips, the Leahy Community Health and Family Center and the Autism Collaborative Centers of Excellence Executive Hub.

    Debra Pellegrino, Ed.D., dean of the Panuska College of Professional Studies began the Blessing of the Books project at the University in 2007. The annual book collection has distributed more than 35,000 books to children in need.

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