A “New York Times” reporter, National Public Radio contributor and author of a popular book about exploring the American dream during the Great Recession will visit Emory & Henry College students March 3-6.
Caitlin Shetterly will speak Tuesday, March 4, at 7:30 p.m. in the Board of Visitors Lounge of the E&H Van Dyke Center as part of the James S. Rawlins Memorial Lecture Series. Her presentation will explore journeys: physical, emotional and investigative journeys, from which she draws upon her own experiences, particularly those involving a loss of personal fortune as she and her family struggled through the Great Recession.
Also, during her visit, Shetterly will meet with students in a variety of classes and groups, ranging from environmental economics, to the English honor society to a group of theatre majors. She also will meet with mass communications students to talk about her national media connections which, in addition to the New York Times and National Public Radio, have included, among others, “Slate,” “O, The Oprah Magazine,” “The Washington Post,” and “The Los Angeles Times.”
In addition, she is scheduled to meet with representatives from various regional organizations who partner with the Appalachian Center for Civic Life at Emory & Henry.
Shetterly comes to Emory & Henry as part of the Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellowship awarded to Emory & Henry by the Council of Independent Colleges. The program brings prominent artists, diplomats, journalists, business leaders, and other nonacademic professionals to campuses across the United States for substantive dialogue with students and faculty members.
Shetterly is author of the memoir, Made for You and Me: Going West, Going Broke, Finding Home, which chronicles the journey she took with her husband, a fellow freelance writer, across the country with the expectation of jobs that dissolved as the result of the Great Recession. According to the book the couple return to her mother’s small home in Maine, broke and unemployed, searching for ways to start over. In the end, they learn that family trumps the need for success and exploration and sustains individuals through tough times of transition.
Like her experiences, her topics for discussion are wide-ranging: the popularity and power of memoir writing; hard stories: why we tell them, why we need them; the death of the American dream: the changing meaning of those three powerful words and how America has changed along with them; women in the recession (more women are supporting their families than ever before in American history); how to live and eat simply (and locally); and the difference between telling story for public radio and writing a book.
Shetterly is the editor of Fault Lines: Stories of Divorce, an anthology of America’s best stories on the subject of divorce. Her recent article, "The Bad Seed," which was published in the 2013 issue of Elle, reveals her personal struggle with illness caused by genetically modified corn, was published in the August 2013 issue of Elle.
She is a contributing producer to National Public Radio where she can be heard regularly on “All Things Considered,” “Morning Edition,” and “Weekend Edition.” She is a syndicated columnist for Oprah.com, CCN.com, and Yahoo.com. In 2009, Shetterly created a series of autobiographical audio diaries for NPR’s “Weekend Edition” about the Great Recession which, with her blog, “Passage West,” inspired Made for You and Me.