Thursday, May 17, 2007

"outside-in" student activism

Outside-In is a group of Oregon State University students who have organized under sociology professor Michelle Inderbitzin. We have recently graduated from Inside-Out, a program that combines fifteen inmates from a local prison and fifteen university students in a class that studies issues of crime, justice and public policy. Our class was the first on the west coast to be held in a men’s maximum security prison, the Oregon State Penitentiary. While all thirty students, both inside and out, and Professor Inderbitzin took away a priceless experience, seven of us have decided to attempt to give back, not only to our inside classmates, but to all the inmates of OSP.

One of the many goals of Outside-In is to provide the institution with scholarly literature focusing on issues of racial, social and economic inequality within the justice system, as well as society at large, by organizing a book drive. Providing inmates with quality reading will allow them to become aware of the social and political context in which they have been imprisoned. By empowering inmates, it is our hope that they will have a greater opportunity to create change within the institution as well as on the outside, if and when upon release. Empowerment is a catalyst to reform and our prison system is overdue.

Please send your donation to:

C/o Professor Michelle Inderbitzin
307 Fairbanks Hall
Department of Sociology
Oregon State University
Corvallis, OR 97331

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