Why Teach Liberal Arts in Prison?

Liberal arts. Anyone studying this subject is frequently acquainted with an eye roll followed by, “And how are you supposed to get a job with that?” Liberal arts have a bad rap, and that is highly underserved. The truth is, liberal arts is among one of the oldest courses of study in the world! While

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Prison debate team fells an intellectual giant

It’s not all that often we get the chance to post a strictly “feel good” article on here, so when one comes along I’m going to jump on it. This past week Harvard University’s renowned debating team fell to a surprising opponent: prisoners from the Bard prison initiative! The team was comprised of members of The

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The Amazing Results When You Give a Prison Inmate a Liberal Arts Education

By Jerry Adler / Smithsonian Magazine Separated by eight years, a dozen subway stops, and a vast socioeconomic distance, Erica Mateo and Max Kenner had one thing in common growing up: They were no one’s candidates for most likely to succeed. Mateo was raised by her grandmother in one of Brooklyn’s roughest neighborhoods, dropped out

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Art Programs for Prisoners

By Mary Plummer /  Image courtesy

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation will announce Friday it plans to spend $1 million to restore arts programing for prisoners.

The funding will bring back the Arts in Corrections program, the demise of which KPCC reported on in January, along with makeshift programs that have popped up to try to fill in some of the gaps.

Despite studies showing inmates released from prison were less likely to return if they had participated in the state’s arts classes, the program was eliminated in 2010. It had been a staple in state prisons for 30 years.

“These are skills that inmate artists can take out into the community when they get out,” said Krissi Khokhobashvili, a spokesperson for the state corrections department. She said the goal is to give inmates job skills so they don’t end up back in prison.

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