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Cocky's Reading Express

Cocky's Reading Express™ travels to Title I elementary schools across the state, performing unforgettable storytimes and providing free giveaway books alongside our Carolina mascot.  

What We Do

Cocky's Reading Express™ is the university’s literacy outreach initiative, working to eradicate illiteracy across South Carolina. Nearly two-thirds of low-income families do not own any books for their children. To address this critical need, USC students travel across the state with our friend Cocky, providing access to free giveaway books, and motivating children to read through high-energy storytime programming. We seek to foster a lifelong love of reading — one Gamecock at a time.

Our program primarily serves 4k through second grade students in Title I elementary schools. The coordinator for Cocky's Reading Express will reach out to qualified schools for in-person school visits.

CRE visits an elementary school
CRE visits an elementary school.

Adopt a School

Adopt a School partners your organization with a Title I school for a year of literacy service. This service can include on-site storytime programming with Cocky for your whole group, little free library installation, library upkeep, and more.

In the News

Raising fans of reading: South Carolina mascot tackles illiteracy

Cocky’s Reading Express debuts “Little Free Library” at local elementary school

ABC highlight about our Conservation with Cocky program

“Dot Buys a Bike” book tour begins, supporting children’s news literacy

Going the extra mile for literacy

Literacy program continues to "grow" despite the coronavirus pandemic


Volunteer opportunities are available throughout the year. Contact Margaret Cook Jackson for more information. Please note that you must be a current USC student, faculty or staff to volunteer. 

Current Sponsors

Dominion Energy, SC Ports Authority

Past Sponsors
BB&T, Bi-Lo, Boeing, BP, Julie and Mike Brenan, Central Carolina Community Foundation, Charleston County Bar Association, Colonial Life, Columbia Arts Academy, Hearst Foundation, International Paper, Nexsen Pruet, Southern Way Catering, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, The Michael Jeffcoat Firm, The Young Lawyers Division (YLD) of the South Carolina Bar 

Contact Us

Margaret cook headshot

Margaret Cook Jackson

For information about CRE or to volunteer:
Phone:  803-777-2169

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