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Inmate Scholars Program
Spotlight: First Graduate of BC's Inmate Scholars Program
Bakersfield College saw its first Inmate Scholars Program cohort graduate on August 28, 2019. These seventeen inmate students at Kern Valley State Prison received their associate's degrees after making the decision to utilize this opportunity and better their future with education.
Inmate Scholars Program Overview
Bakersfield College serves individuals currently incarcerated in ten California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation facilities.
Sara Wallace, English Professor, shares her insights from her experiences teaching inmates. Read her blog
Reflections from Inside.
Components of the Program
Inside of Prison
Transfer-level courses within the CSU Breadth pattern in partnership with 10 prisons.
More than 2,400 enrollments in the first two years of the program.
Courses offered to the Fire Brigade at Wasco State Prison. Students included officers and inmates.
Culinary of Arts Certificate offered at McFarland Community Re-Entry Facility.
Matriculation assistance and support offered at Lerdo County Jail.
Support to the KVSP, B Yard Debate Club.
Outside of Prison
On-campus club, "Free on the Outside," included more than 10 members within the first month. Three students who were formerly incarcerated were elected within the Student Government Association.
Serve re-entry facilities with matriculation, guest speaking, and serve on a local advisory committee.
Partnerships with community, criminal justice, and non-profits.
Kern Valley State Prison (KVSP)
North Kern State Prison (NKSP)
California State Prison, Corcoran (COR)
California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility (SATF)
Wasco State Prison (WSP)
Delano MCCF (contract prison - City of Delano)
Golden State MCCF (contract prison - GEO)
McFarland Female Community Re-Entry Facility (contract prison - GEO)
Central Valley MCCF (contract prison - GEO)
Shafter MCCF (contract prison - City of Shafter)
Lerdo County Jail
CSU Breadth General Education
Certificate of Achievement in Culinary Arts (McFarland)
Fire Technology Courses to the Fire Brigade at Wasco State Prison
Free on the Outside (FOTO) student club
"We know that Bakersfield College volunteers to serve us and we want them to know we appreciate their work."
Program Scholar "We understand why the program exists and how we can create opportunity for other people currently incarcerated."
Program Scholar "For a few hours a week, we feel human again."
Program Scholar Course Statistics
The Inmate Scholars Program continues to expand every year, and is expected to keep growing in the future.
Projected Fall 2018
1 Transferable Course
12 Transferable Courses
10 CTE or Basic Skills Courses 20 Transferable Courses
15 CTE or Basic Skills Courses
1 Course Section
32 Course Sections
50 Course Sections