American college students traveling the world during the Semester at Sea program learn firsthand about poverty, inequalities, humility and kindness through the people they meet. And, if they practice good dental hygiene, those lessons stay with them the rest of their lives.

That's because York's Don Gogniat, one of their professors, challenges them to recall just one of the people they've met and what they learned from that person each time they brush their teeth.

Gogniat calls these folks "Toothbrush People," and members of the York community will have the opportunity to meet some of them at a 10 a.m. brunch at the York JCC, 2000 Hollywood Drive, York, Sunday, Jan. 13.

Tickets are $8. Reservations are requested by Thursday, Jan. 10 and can be made at the JCC front desk or by phone by credit card by calling the JCC at 843-0918.

Gogniat, the former campus executive officer at Penn State York, holds a Ph.D. in cultural geography from the University of Pittsburgh and is a former York JCC board member. He has been working with Semester at Sea since 1985 and, with Valerie D. White, an academic reference librarian, has compiled some of his students' essays and photos into the book "Toothbrush People."

All profits from sales of the $20 book, which will be available for signing at the brunch, are donated to Semester at Sea scholarships.

Those attending are encouraged, but not required, to bring new toothbrushes to this JCC Second Sunday program.


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The toothbrushes will be donated to Global Grins, an organization that will distribute them at no charge to needy people throughout the world.