January 2020 ~ Walls to Bridges *Application window for this course is closed*

Hard to believe that it’s already half way through the fall semester! That means the Walls to Bridges team is gearing up for January and a brand new course. CLICK HERE to apply for Women’s and Gender Studies course 280 Indigenous Women, Autobiography, and Life Writing. It will also take place within the Edmonton Institution for Women. Class time is Mondays 17:00-20:00. We only have 15 seats available so get your applications in asap! *deadline extended to Nov 12th 2019*

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Walls to Bridges (W2B) classes are for-credit courses offered through universities and colleges taught within correctional settings. W2B classes involve equal numbers of incarcerated (“inside”) students and university/college-based (“outside”) students. Providing greater access to post-secondary education and collaborative learning, Walls to Bridges classes offer opportunities for to share, discuss, and explore issues as peers. This is a transformational educational experience which draws upon lived experience and scholarly texts as valuable sources of theorizing as well as challenges the boundaries between people experiencing imprisonment and those who are not.

The Walls to Bridges (W2B) program creates educational partnerships between institutions of higher learning and correctional systems. Founded in 2011 by Shoshanna Pollack of Wilfrid Laurier University in Kitchener, Ontario, this powerful program provides opportunities for transformational and integrative learning between non campus-based students (incarcerated) and campus-based students (non-incarcerated), encourages a paradigm shift in education and social relationships and as such, serves as an important locus of and engine for social change. This program brings together college or university students (campus-based students) with incarcerated men and women (non campus-based students) to study as peers in semester-long college/university level courses. Not only does W2B dismantle educational barriers, but by creating a community of learners from both the prison and the outside community, walls are transcended and inclusive knowledge networks are created.

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Non campus-based students and campus-based students attend weekly classes together within the prison setting in which all students read a variety of texts and write papers. In the final month of class, students collaborate on a class project, defined in large part by what is meaningful to the student group. Examples of class projects that have been completed are needs assessments, poetry books, zines, anthologies, policy recommendations, community forums, and more!

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