Program Website: or

Contacts: Dr. Nalini M. Nadkarni, Dept of Biology, University of Utah, 403 Aline Skaags Building, Salt Lake City UT 84112; (360) 870

Program Description: The goal of the Initiative to bring Science Programs to the Incarcerated in Utah (INSPIRE) is to bring science and nature to the incarcerated. We build connections with science, scientists, inmates, and the corrections community through science lectures, workshops, and conservation projects at correctional facilities in Utah. The program was initiated by Nalini Nadkarni, co-founder of the Sustainability in Prisons Project (SPP).

In 2014, INSPIRE program staff began working with the Utah Department of Corrections and the Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office. Programs now include a monthly science lecture series, science workshops, and conservation research projects.

Degrees/Programs Offered: None; Students engage with monthly science lecture series and with conservation projects in correctional institution

Unique Features: See our website:

Headquarters: Utah

Correctional Facilities Served: Draper State Prison; Salt Lake County Jail; Decker Detention Center

Population Served: Adult men and women; incarcerated youth, all security levels 

Number of Students: 70-100 students 

Graduates to Date: N/A

Year Founded: 2014

Founders: Nalini Nadkarni

College/University/Organization Partnerships: N/A

Funding: Funding for this program comes from the National Science Foundation (DEB-1141833 and DRL-1204448), private donations, and in-kind support from program partners.

Program Evaluation: We have engaged an external evaluator to assess impacts on inmates and staff via surveys and interviews.

  • National Directory of Prison Education Programs