Wesleyan’s Center for Prison Education Celebrates Expansion to Women’s Prison

Wesleyan's Center for Prison Education hosted a celebration on Jan. 24 in honor of the program expanding to include women at the York Correctional Institution in Niantic, Conn. On Jan. 28, two Wesleyan professors will begin teaching classes for college credit. Nineteen prisoners have been selected to participate in the classes, out of 90 who applied. Alexis Sturdy '10 (center), Wesleyan's Center for Prison Education program manager, mingles with guests at the celebration.

Wesleyan’s Center for Prison Education hosted a celebration on Jan. 24 in honor of the program expanding to include women at the York Correctional Institution in Niantic, Conn. On Jan. 28, two Wesleyan professors will begin teaching classes for college credit. Nineteen prisoners have been selected to participate in the classes, out of 90 who applied. Alexis Sturdy ’10 (center), Wesleyan’s Center for Prison Education program manager, mingles with guests at the celebration.

At left, Mike McAlear, chair and associate professor of molecular biology and biochemistry, speaks with David Baird, vice president for information technology and Chief Information Officer, and guest Francesca Livermore at the CPE celebration. McAlear previously taught “Chemistry and Biology in the Modern World: A survey of Drugs and Disease” in the CPE program. Baird is hoping to brainstorm ways ITS can assist with technology needs of the courses taught in prison.

At left, Mike McAlear, chair and associate professor of molecular biology and biochemistry, speaks with David Baird, vice president for information technology and Chief Information Officer, and guest Francesca Livermore at the CPE celebration. McAlear previously taught “Chemistry and Biology in the Modern World: A survey of Drugs and Disease” twice through the CPE program. Baird is hoping to brainstorm ways ITS can assist with technology needs of the courses taught in prison.

Lori Gruen, professor of philosophy, professor of environmental studies, professor of feminist, gender and sexuality studies, speaks to guests at the celebration. Gruen taught a CPE course in 2010 and 2012. This spring, courses on "The English Essay" and "Introduction to Ethics" will be taught by Sean McCann, chair and professor of English, and Beth Richards, a CPE lecturer and director of the Rhetoric and Professional Writing Program at the University of Hartford. Wesleyan's Center for Prison Education was founded in 2009.

At left, Lori Gruen, professor of philosophy, professor of environmental studies, professor of feminist, gender and sexuality studies, taught a CPE course in 2010 and 2012. In back, Elise Springer, associate professor of philosophy, is teaching at York Correctional Institution this semester, and Priscilla Meyer, professor and chair of Russian language and literature, taught a class in 2011.

Alexis Sturdy visits with guests, from left, Elizabeth Feeney, Cindy Russo and Bernard Feeney.

Alexis Sturdy visits with guests, from left, Elizabeth Feeney, Cindy Russo and Bernard Feeney. The Feeneys are from Madison, Conn. and also volunteer in prisons.

Alexis Sturdy mingles with celebration guests Bud Feeney and John Santa. Santa is chairman of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta Prison Volunteers of Connecticut.

Alexis Sturdy mingles with celebration guests Bud Feeney, left, and John Santa. Santa is chairman of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta Prison Volunteers of Connecticut. Wesleyan’s Center for Prison Education was founded in 2009. Two former students have now been released from prison, and have transferred their credits to enroll in the University of Connecticut and Southern Connecticut State University.

Several Wesleyan students volunteer with the CPE program including, from left, Natalie Fine '13, Avery Trufelman'13 and Daniel Nass '13.

Several Wesleyan students volunteer with the CPE program including, from left, Natalie Fine ’13, Avery Trufelman’13 and Daniel Nass ’13.

CPE volunteer Ali Ellerbeck '13 talks with Richard Adelstein, the Woodhouse/Sysco Professor of Economics and department chair. All CPE classes are taught by Wesleyan faculty members, with undergraduate students serving as TAs and writing assistants.

CPE volunteer Ali Ellerbeck ’13 talks with Richard Adelstein, the Woodhouse/Sysco Professor of Economics and department chair. All CPE classes are taught by Wesleyan faculty members, with undergraduate students serving as TAs and writing assistants.

(Photos by Bill Tyner ’13) For more information on Wesleyan’s Center for Prison Education visit this website.