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Editorial StaffNovember 12, 20213min
(By Maia Dawson '24) For Josh Hinman BLS '21, an inmate at Cheshire Correctional Institution, Wesleyan’s Center for Prison Education (CPE) program “felt like a gamble.” When he joined the program in there was no degree pathway and he remembers asking the pilot program directors Russel Perkins '09 and Molly Birnbaum '09, if it was a study. Now years later, Hinman is a college graduate and a member of the inaugural class of Wesleyan BLS degree recipients. Hinman and his classmates Michael Braham BLS '21 and Clyde Meikle BLS '21 shared their experiences with the Wesleyan Center for Prison Education…

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Lauren RubensteinApril 26, 20203min
Wesleyan announced that it will now offer a part-time, non-residential undergraduate degree, the Bachelor of Liberal Studies (BLS). This provides a flexible, affordable path to earning a bachelor’s degree for students who meet Wesleyan’s admission standards but are unable to commit to living on campus for a variety of reasons. The Office of Continuing Studies and the BLS Faculty Governing Board announced the BLS degree in an email to faculty and staff on April 9. Staff, as well as spouses and domestic partners of faculty and staff, who are interested in earning a bachelor’s degree, are encouraged to apply. The…

Lauren RubensteinMarch 2, 20204min
Wesleyan in the News 1. The Open Mind: "Democratizing the Jury" Associate Professor of Government Sonali Chakravarti is interviewed in connection with her new book, Radical Enfranchisement in the Jury Room and Public Life, in which she offers a "full-throated defense of juries as a democratic institution." "I am very interested in how ordinary people engage with political institutions, and juries are the place where ordinary people have the most power," she says. Chakravarti calls for more robust civic education, continuing into adulthood, in order to have a "more effective, modern jury system." 2. Hartford Courant: "Sen. Murphy, Aiming to…

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Lauren RubensteinDecember 17, 20193min
On Nov. 21, Wesleyan's Center for Prison Education (CPE) was honored by the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (CHRO) at its annual Leaders and Legends award ceremony in Hartford, Conn. The ceremony celebrates the state's civil rights leaders in many different areas, including education, business or law, community activism, civic leadership, and social justice. CPE received the Edythe J. Gaines Award for Inclusive Education, named in honor of the first African American and first woman to head the Hartford school system. The award recognizes educators who dedicate their careers to promoting equality, inclusion, and fairness in education. Since…

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Cynthia RockwellAugust 21, 20182min
It was a typical graduation on Aug. 1, 2018: tasseled mortarboards and academic gowns, faculty in academic regalia, proud family members, the strains of “Pomp and Circumstance,” speeches—some recalling challenges; others looking toward further success—diplomas, handshakes, smiles for the cameras, and bear hugs of congratulations. It was a graduation like none other: held in Cheshire Correctional Institution, it was the first time 18 incarcerated students in the maximum security prison received associate's degrees through an innovative collaboration between Wesleyan University's Center for Prison Education and Middlesex Community College. A week earlier, a similar graduation had taken place in York Correctional Institution,…

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Lauren RubensteinAugust 20, 20182min
In this recurring feature in The Wesleyan Connection, we highlight some of the latest news stories about Wesleyan and our alumni. Recent Wesleyan News The New York Times: Defending Conservatism, and Seeking Converts President Michael Roth '78 reviews Roger Scruton's new book on Conservatism, which he writes provides an "enlightening" background on a variety of important conservative thinkers, but stoops to scapegoating Muslims to "rally the troops." 2. Hartford Courant: First Group of Students Graduates from Wesleyan's Prison Education Program The first-ever Wesleyan Center for Prison Education Program graduation ceremonies, held in partnership with Middlesex Community College at York and Cheshire correctional institutions on…

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Lauren RubensteinApril 9, 20182min
Wesleyan has received a $1 million, four-year grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support operations at the Center for Prison Education (CPE). The grant will allow CPE to expand its advanced course offerings, recruit new faculty, and bolster its partnership with Middlesex Community College (MxCC) and the Connecticut Department of Corrections. Since 2009, CPE has offered accredited Wesleyan courses to students at the Cheshire Correctional Institution, a maximum security prison for men. In 2013, the program expanded to offer the same coursework to students at York Correctional Institution for women. Courses range from English to biology to philosophy,…

Lauren RubensteinNovember 16, 20154min
Two members of the Wesleyan community participated in a discussion on WNPR's Where We Live focused on "Confronting Social Injustice." Bashaun Brown, a former student at Wesleyan's Center for Prison Education who spent more than six years incarcerated at Cheshire Correctional Institution, is now pursuing an entrepreneurial venture called TRAP House. "All prison experience is pretty bad, but thanks to Wesleyan, I was able to transform my prison space. My prison experience was one of educating myself, and trying to get better and make sure I never make the types of mistakes that I made to get into that situation in the first place.…

Olivia DrakeSeptember 24, 20153min
In July, the Wesleyan Center for Prison Education (CPE) was awarded a grant from The Tow Foundation of $100,000 over two years in unrestricted funding for general operating expenses. Funds will be used for academic programming, instructional materials and administrative costs of the program. Now in its sixth year, CPE provides accredited Wesleyan courses to incarcerated students at Cheshire Correctional Institute, a men’s maximum security prison, and York Correctional Institution, Connecticut’s only women’s facility. Prisoners at MacDougall-Walker CI are also able to apply to the Center, and are transferred to Cheshire CI if admitted. The Center currently serves 40 students, and will…

Kate CarlisleMarch 26, 20141min
The Center for Prison Education has received a grant of $300,000 from the Ford Foundation, supporting the continuation of the program which has delivered a Wesleyan education to Connecticut prisons since 2009. The grant will not only help fund the classes taught at the Cheshire and York Correctional Institutions, but also support CPE’s re-entry services, which assist students who complete their sentences in continuing their college education post-release. “Support from the Ford Foundation recognizes the necessity of bringing educational opportunities to our prisons, the success of the Center for Prison Education’s model for doing so, and the ability of incarcerated…