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Children's book celebrates history of Dahlonega Campus

"UNG The Gold I See" is the first in a series about the five UNG campuses: Dahlonega, Gainesville, Cumming, Oconee, and Blue Ridge. The book about Gainesville campus is already in development and will release in 2019.

University of North Georgia (UNG) President Bonita Jacobs has written the first in a series of children's books that will feature each of the university's five campuses.

Published by UNG Press, "UNG The Gold I See: The Legacy of UNG’s Dahlonega Campus," tells the story of a young boy and his family during their visit to the campus.

"UNG The Gold I See" engages readers of all ages through its multi-generational main characters. Benjamin Smith, daughter Jamie, and grandson Tommy each have a different goal during Visitors Day at the Dahlonega Campus.

The grandfather wants to recall the memories of his years in the Corps of Cadets, while Tommy's mother wants to remember her years in UNG's nursing program. Tommy wants to find the legendary treasure: the gold hidden somewhere on campus. He has Nigel the Nighthawk, UNG's mascot, and a treasure map to guide him; his grandfather and mother have their memories.

"UNG The Gold I See" is the first in a series about the five UNG campuses: Dahlonega, Gainesville, Cumming, Oconee, and Blue Ridge. The book about Gainesville campus is already in development and will release in 2019.

Among her many initiatives at UNG, Jacobs’ scholarship support for students has been a major priority. Her inauguration in 2013 was celebrated with the first Scholarship Gala, which has become an annual event. In creating these children's books, Jacobs said it was important that all proceeds go to scholarships for UNG students.

“UNG’s Dahlonega Campus was established in 1873 and has a rich history punctuated by its military emphasis and filled with tradition,” Jacobs said. “The book is an attempt to illustrate the campus’ uniqueness, document campus traditions, and to provide friends and alumni an opportunity to share the history with their children and grandchildren.  It was important to me that all proceeds support scholarships and assist future students who will continue adding to our rich heritage. I look forward to working on similar projects highlighting UNG’s other campuses in the future.”

The hardback book is priced at $29.99 and will be released in late November; Jacobs will be signing purchased copies and speak briefly about the book from noon to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 27 in the UNG Bookstore on the Dahlonega Campus. Look for pre-order information (coming soon) on the UNG Press website. It is printed in color with illustrations on every page. In addition to the captivating story and images, children will delight in trying to find the hidden Nighthawks as they tour the Dahlonega Campus with the Brown family. A history of UNG is included after the story so parents and grandparents can share more details and history.

Jacobs, the 17th president of UNG, took office in July 2011 as the university’s first female president and only the second woman to lead one of the country's six senior military colleges. In 2014, Jacobs was named as one of the "100 Most Influential Georgians" by Georgia Trend magazine.  She has also been recognized by the Atlanta Business Chronicle as one of the "Top Education Leaders in Atlanta" and as one of its “Women Who Mean Business”.

The book also provided an opportunity for Jacobs to collaborate with her sister, J’Nelle Short, who illustrated the book. Short has a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Stephen F. Austin University and is an accomplished artist who has taught art for more than 30 years, including being named "Teacher of the Year" six times.

The UNG Press is a scholarly, peer-reviewed press; its primary function is to promote education and research with a special emphasis on innovative scholarship and pedagogy.

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