Expanding minds behind bars

May 4, 2015

The Prison University Project is the only on-site degree college program in California's entire prison system. It's housed at San Quentin and the tuition-free program is so popular that prisoners across the state try to transfer to San Quentin to participate. San Quentin Prison Report's Tommy Shakur Ross tells the story of what happens when inmates go back to school.

There aren't any architecturally designed buildings, with sweeping archways, thick columns, and pointed steeples. But there are a few bungalow trailers with ramps for wheelchair accessibility to classrooms, which is enclosed within a 20-foot fence with razer wire. It's called The Prison University Project.

Click the audio player above to listen.

KALW has partnered with radio producers inside California's oldest prison to bring you the San Quentin Prison Report, a series of stories focusing on the experiences of these men, written and produced by those living inside the prison's walls. You can find more stories from the San Quentin Prison Report here