“The Pact: Three Young Men Make a Promise and Fulfill a Dream” by Dr. Sampson Davis, George Jenkins, and Rameck Hunt with Lisa Frazier Page is an easy-to-read and compelling nonfiction book certain to engage students. It chronicles the story of three African American youth in inner-city Newark, New Jersey, who made a pact that they would become doctors one day. This promise of mutual support enabled them to get through school and avoid the temptations of the streets. Despite struggles and setbacks, they all became doctors.
This book lends itself to helping students acquire a broader vocabulary. My list of 128 words includes page references and space for students to write the appropriate definitions. It can be used as an in-class activity or a homework assignment.