Italy Reads

Calendar of Events

Registration is required for all events. All activities are online unless otherwise specified. Please return to this page for updates during the academic year. Italy Reads offers opportunities for high school students to acquire valuable experience in the context of Percorsi per le Competenze Trasversali e per l'Orientamento (PCTO) (ex-Alternanza Scuola Lavoro (ASL)). See Programs for High Schools or Programmi per le Scuole for more information and contact [email protected] if you have any questions.

Italy Reads 2021-2022 William Demby's 'Beetlecreek'

Melanie Masterton Sherazi


Keynote Address and Master Class for High School Teachers by Melanie Masterton Sherazi, Ph.D. 


JCU students interested in getting involved in the Italy Reads program, speaking in English with Italian high school students about William Demby's, Beetlecreek, race relations, social acceptance, and much more are invited to see the Volunteer for Italy Reads page for more information.

Teachers and students are invited to consult the Italy Reads Resources for Teacher and Students. This collection of resources is compiled each year by the JCU librarians and published in June. It includes the presentations of Sample Lesson Plans on the author and the work prepared by JCU professors and by Italy Reads high school teachers who attended the relevant Professional Development Course last spring.   

Online Teacher Training Workshops

In preparation for Italy Reads 2021, JCU offered 26 scholarships to attend a Professional Development Course (30 hrs.) on William Demby's Beetlecreek. The emphasis of this course was to prepare teachers to engage their students in the study of this work from literary and interdisciplinary perspectives. Interaction among teachers and an exchange of best practices were encouraged. The course introduced background information on William Demby and the social and literary context in which he wrote. These teachers will be present at the Teacher Training Workshops to share their didactic perspective and experience.

During the September and October workshops, some of these teachers will join Prof. Lindsay by presenting sample lesson plans.

Workshop dates and times 
Friday, 23 April 2021 - 4-6pm
Friday, 24 September 2021 - 4-6pm
Friday, 22 October 2021 - 4-6pm

Student Video Contest

Deadline: 24 January 2022. The Award Ceremony will be held in April 2022.
The Italy Reads Student Video Contest is the culmination of a year of activities between high schools and JCU's Italy Reads Program that are all centered around the work and life the selected author. Each year, nearly 200 teachers and their students participate in Italy Reads or one of the other Activities for High Schools offered free of charge by John Cabot University. Many students earn a significant number of hours for Percorsi per le Competenze Trasversali e per l'Orientamento (PCTO) for their participation in Italy Reads.

Video Production Workshop for high school students (online, end of November).


14 October 2020 (online) Keynote Address by Antonio López, Ph.D. Watch the video recording of this Master Class is available at Italy Reads Resources for Teachers.
21 October 2020 (online) Master Class for High School Teachers by Keynote Speaker. Watch the video recording of this Master Class is available at Italy Reads Resources for Teachers.

18 October 2020, (online) TEDxJohnCabotUniversity was an event focused on contextualizing the position of academic institutions in the pressing issue of promoting climate action through change-makers, educators, and entrepreneurs. Watch the videos on YouTube. Read the program of TEDxJohnCabotUniversity Countdown Event.

Teacher Training Workshops 
Friday, 11 September 2020--9:30am-12:00pm; 3:30-6:00pm
Saturday, 24 October 2020--9:30am-12:00pm; 3:30-6:00pm

Date and time forthcoming 


  • 7 September 2019, 9:00am-5:00pm, Aula Magna Regina, Guarini Campus, Teacher Training Workshop
  • 3 October, and 19 November 2019, 4:30-7:30pm, Room T.G.3., Tiber Campus, Mini Teacher Training Workshops
  • 14 October, 2019, 6-8pm, Aula Magna Regina, Guarini Campus, Keynote Address, "Composting Whitman: An Approach to Reading Leaves of Grass" by Ed Folsom, Ph.D.
  • 15 October 2019, 6-8pm, Aula Magna Regina, Guarini Campus, Master Class for Teachers by Ed Folsom, Ph.D.
  • 29 October to 10 November 2019, Italy Reads Theatre - Italy Reads and The English Theatre of Rome present Donald Steven Olson's award-winning new play, Oscar & Walt. 10 performances were offered.
  • 22, 29 October and 26 November 2019 - Italy Reads Video Production Workshops for high school students.
  • 18 November, 7:00-8:30pm, Aula Magna Regina, Guarini Campus, Film Screening and discussion with producers of Whitman Alabama.
  • 1 April, 2020, 6:00-7:00pm, Aula Magna Regina, Guarini Campus, Student Video Contest Award Ceremony (online)

Italy Reads 2018 Flannery O'Connor
Professional Development Course for High School Teachers - Spring 2018 Term, Teacher Training Workshops, 13 April and 28 September (replica) 9:00am-5: 00 pm, Aula Magna Regina, Guarini Campus, Keynote Address and Master Class for Teachers with Mark Bosco, S.J., Ph.D.

Preview Film Screening of the documentary Flannery, introduced and commented by producer and director Rev. Mark Bosco, S.J., Ph.D., The English Theatre of Rome presented 7 replicas of a choral reading of 'Everything That Rises Must Converge.' 

Video Production Workshops
Italy Reads Special Professional Development Course for High School Teachers entitled 'Information and Misinformation in a Fake News World, taught by visiting Professor Deanna Lee.

TESOL Italy's 43rd National Convention 'Paths of Change'
Professor Lee and some of her students presented the outcome of their course in the workshop entitled 'The Importance of Language in a Fake News World.'

Italy Reads 2018 Student Video Contest

Italy Reads 2019, Walt Whitman - Ed Folsom
Italy Reads 2018, Flannery O'Connor - Fr. Mark Bosco
Italy Reads 2017, Emily Dickinson - Former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins, with very special guest ESA Astronaut Paolo Nespoli from ASI Mission VITA on the International Space Station
Italy Reads 2016, The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams - Sarah Churchwell
Italy Reads 2015, The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison - Alessandro Portelli
Italy Reads 2014, A Farewell to Arms - Silvia Ammary
Italy Reads 2013, The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri - Jhumpa Lahiri
Italy Reads 2012, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald - Sarah Churchwell
Italy Reads 2011, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers - Cathy Fussell
Italy Reads 2010, Our Town by Thornton Wilder - Buck Herron
The Big Read Rome 2009, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - Charles J. Shields