Grants and Events
2022: American Council of Learned Societies awards the Freedom & Captivity Curriculum Project, based at Colby College, a Sustaining Public Humanities Grant
2023: National Alliance for Higher Education in Prison awards Colby College a grant to support the inaugural cohort of Justice Think Tank Fellows. The 13 Fellows selected to join the Think Tank are undergraduate and graduate students who are currently incarcerated in five different Maine prisons. The team of Fellows will be working on a collaborative research project at the intersection of Restorative Justice and Criminal Justice during 2023.
Colby Across the Walls hosted an Abolitionist Pedagogy Conversation series during 2022-23.
Monday, September 19, 2022
Brandon Brown, Leo Hylton and Mackenzie Kelley. Brandon and Mackenzie are formerly incarcerated and Leo is currently incarcerated in Maine. All have taken inside-out style courses through University of Maine, Augusta while incarcerated. Brandon is in the PhD program and Leo has completed the Master’s program at The Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution at George Mason University. Mackenzie was the TA for MIT’s inside-out program at the Southern Maine Women’s Reentry Center. At Colby, Leo co-teaches ‘Carcerality and Abolition’ and Brandon teaches ‘The Stories We Tell: Common Narratives of Criminal Justice.’ They will introduce the themes of the series and speak about their experiences as inside students and teachers.
Thursday, October 13, 2022
Rebecca Ginsburg, Director of the Education Justice Project at University of Illinois. Rebecca will discuss EJP, one of the country’s most notable prison education programs, and the question of what constitutes education justice.
Tuesday, October 25, 2022
Priya Kandaswamy, (former) Education Director for Mount Tamalpais College at San Academic Program Director for Mount Tamalpais College at San Quentin, the country’s only liberal arts college inside a prison.
Monday, November 14, 2022
Erin Castro, Professor of Higher Education and Co/director and founder of the University of Utah Prison Education Program. Erin founded and edits the Journal of Higher Education in Prison. Erin will talk about the ideals and limits of the idea of emancipatory education in carceral settings and her vision of the Journal as a space for co-creating and co-learning abolitionist pedagogy.
Monday, February 13, 2023
Garrett Felber, American Studies at Yale (formerly of University of Mississippi, which fired him for his abolitionist organizing work). He an organizer with Study and Struggle, a group that supports and collaborates with radical study groups inside Mississippi prisons and across the country. He previously co-founded Liberation Literacy in Portland, Oregon and the Parchman Oral History Project in Mississippi. Garrett will talk about the challenges and horizons for political education and mutual aid organizing across prison walls.
Monday, March 6, 2023
Stevie Wilson, incarcerated abolitionist educator and writer in Pennsylvania, who has created curricula for study groups inside prisons. Stevie will frame the question of the relationship between abolition and study. Listen to the Study and Struggle conversation on this topic with Stevie, Garrett Felber, Rachel Herzing, Derecka Purnell and Rukia Lumumba and Study Groups and Moving Together; Imagining a New World Without Cages.
Wednesday, April 19, 2023
Eli Meyerhoff, Zach Schwarz-Weinstein, Abigail Boggs and Nick Mitchell, collaborators on the Abolitionist University project. Eli is author of Beyond Education about creating alternative abolitionist educational spaces. Zach works with the Bard Prison Initiative and the Institute of Radical Imagination. Abigail is finishing her first book, Noncitizen Futures and the U.S. University: A Genealogy and Nick has two forthcoming books, Disciplinary Matters: Black Studies, Women’s Studies, and the (Neo)Liberal University and The University, in Theory: Essays on Institutionalized Knowledge.
Tuesday, May 2, 2023
Sponsored by the Colby College Provost Office, Maine Prison Education Partnership at UMA, Anthropology Department at Colby College, Education Department at Colby College, American Council of Learned Societies.
Colby Across the Walls students featured in Abolition Night at the Strand
Recorded on November 5, 2021 at the Strand in Rockland, Maine.
An evening of performance and insight brought to you by those with lived experiences in the justice system. Hosted and co-designed in partnership with the Opportunity Scholars of the University of Southern Maine, the Maine Prisoner Advocacy Coalition, the University of Maine Augusta Prison Education Partnership and the Freedom & Captivity Project.