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October 11, 2013
CONTACT: K.E. Schwab

‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’ publishes alumna’s essay

Valerie Hoffman Benko, a 2002 Slippery Rock University communication graduate, has had an essay published in “Readers Choice, The Chicken Soup for the Soul Stories that Changed Your Lives.”

Her “Good Enough to Eat” appears on page 228 of the 2013 book. The essay is her reminiscence on how the original “Chicken Soup for the Soul,” published 20 years ago, affected her.

“Chicken Soup for the Soul” is a series of books featuring short, inspiration stories and motivational essays. The 2013 edition was published to commemorate the 20th anniversary.

Benko said she was influenced by the story “It’s a Dog’s Life” in the first edition. It tells how a dog breeder explains how table scraps are bad for dogs because they are high in fat and calories.

Benko said the story prompted her to make changes in her own diet, moving away from processed food to a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, complex carbohydrates and lean protein.

Published by Soul Publishing, “Chicken Soup for the Soul, Stories that Changed Your Lives,” is available at

Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.