Comic books can be viewed as a child’s read, and rarely seen as a voice for social acceptance, cultural identity or first-generation Americans…until now. Moraine Valley’s Graphic Novel Symposium, Sept. 26-27, will highlight the comic “Ms. Marvel: No Normal,” the story of a first-generation, Muslim-American female teenager. The author also is set to visit campus in the spring.

Written by G. Willow Wilson, “Ms. Marvel” won a Hugo Award for Best Graphic Story in 2015. It’s the story of Kamala Khan, a young woman navigating her way through high school and learning about her super power—polymorphing, the ability to change her body into anything. She struggles with her identity as a first-generation American high schooler with traditional parents while fighting crime.

The symposium starts Wednesday, Sept. 26, 10 a.m., in the campus Library with “The Magnificent: The Creative Journey of Comics.” Writer, inker and colorists for the graphic novel, “The Magnificent” will talk about the collaborative and production process.

Award-winning author of “Gabby Garcia’s Ultimate Playbook,” Iva-Marie Palmer, will discuss her writing process and collaborative work on Sept. 27, 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m., in the Library. Later that day at 1 p.m., a faculty panel will explore the significance of “Ms. Marvel.”

“‘Ms. Marvel’ presents a text that connects with our curriculum in many ways, whether it is art classes, literature, sociology, and many others. Ultimately, this is just a great story that all of us can relate to,” said Dr. Troy Swanson, Moraine Valley teaching and learning librarian and department chair, Library Services.

All events are free and open to the public. For more information, visit