Thebarge’s ‘Invisible Girls’ selected as latest Maroon Edition book

sarah Thebarge’s “The Invisible Girls: A Memoir” is the 2014 Maroon Edition selection at Mississippi State.

Maroon Edition is the annual university-wide program that encourages incoming freshman class members to read the same book during the summer. Participants then engage in dialog with other students, administration, faculty and staff members throughout the school year.

“We hope that all of next fall’s incoming freshmen will read the book before the fall semester begins and participate in related activities planned for next academic year,” said President Mark E. Keenum in making the announcement in March.

A Pennsylvania minister’s daughter, Thebarge had earned a master’s degree from the Yale School of Medicine and was studying journalism at Columbia University when she was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 27.

Published last year by Jericho Books, “Invisible Girls” chronicles Thebarge’s diagnosis, years of treatment, and drastic career and relationship changes as she relocated to Oregon in an effort to put her life back together. While there, an unexpected involvement with a struggling Somalia refugee mother and daughters–”invisible” people in their own neighborhood–led her to better understand and overcome her own devastation and realize that she also had been an “invisible girl.”

“This powerful story helps readers see the world around us with new eyes,” Keenum said. Calling the book “reading time well spent,” he noted that Thebarge’s writings also have been included in “Just Between Us,” “Relevant” and “Christianity Today,” and featured on

All incoming freshmen attending MSU’s orientation sessions will receive a copy of the 272-page book. It also will be available through the Barnes & Noble at Mississippi State and other outlets.
For information about Maroon Edition events and activities, visit