The classes that were offered through the Prison Studies Project (from 2008-2014) were made possible through a collaboration between Boston University, the Massachusetts Department of Correction and Harvard University.
The Prison Studies Project partnership with Boston University’s longstanding prison education program marks the first time that traditional college students learned alongside incarcerated students as part of a curriculum for college credit. Never before had Harvard University students and men and women enrolled in BU’s program shared a classroom inside the walls of prison. With a one-year HILT grant in 2013, we were able to include graduate students from Harvard Divinity School, which marked the first time in national history, as far as we know, that post-secondary prison education included, inside the prison classroom, both graduate and undergraduate students from a traditional college campus.
We have a powerful opportunity to institutionalize innovative teaching and learning at Harvard. To be an active community citizen is to reach out to people who are often denied educational opportunities; Harvard’s support of prison education is invaluable as is the opportunity for Harvard students to learn with and from peers who are incarcerated.