The Obama Administration announced last week that for the first time in more than 20 years, prison inmates will be able to receive financial aid for college. The "Second Chance Pell" pilot program will enable prisoners to take college courses using Pell Grants paid for by taxpayers. About 12,000 inmates are expected to participate.
The news re-ignites debate over funding for prison to college programs: supporters say the programs reduce recidivism, but opponents say they are a waste of taxpayer money and are unfair to college students who have not committed crimes.
We explore the impact of prison to college programs, including those in the Rochester area. Our guests:
- Joshua Dubler, associate professor of religion at the University of Rochester, and head of the University of Rochester's prison education program
- Edward Wiltse, professor of English and communication at Nazareth College head of Nazareth College's "Jail Program"