On Monday I attended a talk with Dr. Ruth Simmons as she discussed her new memoir, “Up Home: One Girl’s Journey.”
The memoir takes the reader on a journey from Simmons’ early youth to her presidency at Prairie View A&M University. This event drew a large crowd as many packed the Julia C. Hester House auditorium to hear the author’s thought process on the book’s creation.
Simmons was asked if she wanted to launch the book in New York, but she decided to launch the book among her roots in the heart of 5th Ward Texas at the Julia C. Hester House.
“Over time, Hester House became a prominent part of my life, opening doors to opportunities that I could not have known otherwise,” wrote Simmons.
Simmons is noted for becoming the first Black president of an Ivy League university. During her book discussion, she spoke about how poverty is only a reflection of your income, not your learning ability.
After reading the book, Simmons hopes the reader takes away the following three concepts:
- Young people should be aware and open to all opportunities for learning
- There is no substitute for working hard
- Education is the single most important thing to add value to your life