Update | Consortium for the Liberal Arts in Prison

Celebrating Two Years of the Women’s College Partnership

Dear colleagues, faculty, partners, and friends of WCP,

We are elated to announce our two-year anniversary at the Indiana Women’s Prison.

We are extraordinarily proud of the ways our students and faculty have adapted to the many challenges presented this past year and their unwavering commitment to education and continued growth.

In acknowledging the many challenges that came with the unusual circumstances, varying study environment(s), including not having an instructor and other classmates to discuss and support course material, since March 2020, we have:

  •     Elicited weekly feedback from students for course-specific and advising support
  •     Held biweekly faculty and advising meetings to address needs and ensure smooth transitions
  •     Created a quarterly newsletter, Scholars Looking Forward, with morale-boosting content, including writing prompts, public health news, mindfulness and meditation resources
  •    Hosted the first annual Neighbor-to Neighbor Book Club in partnership with the Indianapolis Public Library and the Flanner Community Writing Center

While the feats have been many, we are humbled to share the following highlights of the past two years that have been made possible through the grit of our students and your continued support.

Selected Highlights
  • January 2019: First 16 students enrolled at WCP to complete degree programs started in other college programs; four courses offered
  • Summer 2019: Full-time program director started
  • 2019-2020 Academic Year: 12 courses offered
  • January 2020: First student graduates and returns home having earned a Marian University BA; WCP team connects her to housing and employment support
  • Spring 2020: Research librarian is hired to deliver research literacy curriculum and support students’ research
  • February 2020: First career readiness workshop delivered by Marian University’s career development team
  • March 2020: Due to COVID-19, WCP pivots to distance learning to complete the spring semester
  • May 2020: Six students complete their AA degree in liberal arts through Marian University.
  • Summer 2020: Three courses offered via distance learning. One student completes AA at end of the semester
  • Fall 2020: Three courses are offered and three students expected to complete AA at the end of the semester
  • Winter 2020: 80 IWP residents sign up to participate in the first annual prison-wide winter book club; WCP partnered with the Indianapolis Public Library and Flanner Community Writing Center to offer the first Neighbor-to-Neighbor Book Club where both inside and outside community members read the same book and engaged in dialogue via distance
  • December 2020: WCP hosted the first reunion for the first four that went through reentry
Reentry Highlights
  • All individuals employed and count on reliable housing
  • An alumna announced acceptance to graduate program in informatics at IUPUI
  • An alumna announced continuation to the bachelor’s degree at Marian University
  • An alumna announced their application to the bachelor’s degree at IUPUI

As we look towards Spring 2021, we anticipate three courses to be offered, including the Senior Seminar course with three students expected to complete their bachelor’s degree at the end of the semester.

Please join us in celebrating the work of students, faculty, and community.

 

Best wishes to you all in 2021!

Zelideh Martinez Hoy
Program Director