For women inmates, reentry into society can be extremely difficult. Often women returning to society have little education, children and limited job skills. So, for the women incarcerated at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility, having the opportunity to receive a college degree can dramatically change the course of their lives for the better.
In 1996, the Bedford Hills College Program was founded to provide educational opportunities for women incarcerated at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility located in New York State, a maximum security prison for women. In association with the Correctional Facility is Marymount Manhattan College which offers non-credited College-preparatory courses and credit bearing courses that may lead to the women inmates receiving an Associate of Arts degree in Social Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees in Sociology.
"Education is a fabulous thing! Knowledge is contagious."
The College Prison Program from MaryMount College is completely funded by private donations and grants. The women inmates at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility are extremely thankful to have the education offered to them and work very hard to ensure that the money that is being donated for their education is being used properly and thoughtfully.
The education and degrees that the women of Bedford Hills Correctional Facility receive not only give them self-confidence and self-worth, but also greatly reduces the recidivism rate at that facility. The cost of incarceration is monumentally more expensive than education and due to generous funding and staffing from Marymount College, the released prisoners will be contributing members of society.
For more information on this program please read more here.
To watch a heart-warming video with staff and women inmates of Bedford Hills Correctional Facility, watch here.