Possibility Lab’s Students from San Quentin Present at the Alliance for Higher Education in Prison Conference

Possibility Lab Chief of Staff Emily Swide joined this year’s National Conference on Higher Education in Prison where students from the Possibility Lab’s Fall 2022 Community-Based Research course at Mount Tamalpais College at San Quentin presented virtually on their research findings. This year’s NCHEP theme is: Close the Distance. The Alliance seeks to challenge the field of higher education in prison (HEP) to think about the various ways we can use education to close distances. The distances that exist between the “inside” and the “outside,” the disparities in career opportunities and access to resources, the separations of families and communities, the societal gaps between those living securely and those subjected to insecurity, the distances between theory and practice, between our intentions and our impact, and the distance between higher education in prison and higher education outside of prison. There are endless ways in which education can work to close distances and draw us into closer relationship, and the 13th NCHEP encourages us to explore these ways together as a community. In doing so, we push the field to view higher education in prison not simply as curriculum development and delivery, but as a complex ecosystem with symbiotic components. These components must be nurtured and supported to cultivate collaborative learning environments that benefit all: students, facilitators, administrators, and community members both inside and outside of prison.

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