Published: May 3, 2023

Instructional faculty and staff interested in integrating the Buffs One Read title The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World into their curriculum for first-year studentsThe cover of the Book of Joy
can access a research guide and an open canvas course.

Both resources provide discussion and activities to support student engagement and were created by teaching and research faculty in the University Libraries. Instructional faculty and staff may invite students to join the course or they can copy the content into their own Canvas courses. 

The Book of Joy, Lasting Happiness in a Changing World, by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, with Douglas Abrams, features a 7-day conversation between two of the world's most inspirational spiritual leaders about our search for joy and meaning in the face of suffering. It was selected from a shortlist of seven titles as the best fit for 2023-2024 Buffs One Read theme of Community Care and Compassion.

“Finding a way to use the One Read book in our courses is a way that faculty can help foster community and engagement on our campus,” said Tiffany Beechy, professor of English and chair of the Boulder Faculty Assembly.  “It isn’t always easy to fit the One Read material into our syllabi, but if we can do it, the benefits are substantial.  I encourage my colleagues to embrace the One Read program with a spirit of curiosity and creativity.  If I could find a way to work Indigenous epistemology (Braiding Sweetgrass) into my course on medieval media, I’ll bet a mathematician can creatively include some of the wisdom of the Dalai Lama.”  

The Book of Joy is available from the University Libraries in ebook and audio formats. 

Buffs One Read is a campus program which aims to build community around the shared experience of reading one book. Designed specifically for the incoming first year and transfer students but open to the entire campus, the program is entering its third year. The University Libraries is planning special programming in the fall for the campus community including book discussion groups around The Book of Joy.

“Common reading programs are popular in higher education because they bridge academic and student life and are a high impact teaching and learning practice,” said Robert H. McDonald, dean of the University Libraries and senior vice provost for online education. “We hope the campus community will join in the Buffs One Read this year, whether it’s integrating the text into teaching or forming a book group. It is a great way for us to build community and create a sense of belonging for our students and ourselves.”