Pell Grant program offers inmates a second chance

IMG_1831 (1)Three Michigan colleges will be a part of a federal program which offers Pell Grants to inmates.

67 higher education institutions across the country were approved for what’s called the Second Chance Pell Pilot Program.

In Michigan Mott, Jackson, and Delta College will offer about 1,500 Pell Grants to inmates.

Jackson College will award the most grants nationwide.

Dr. Todd Butler is the Dean of Arts and Sciences at Jackson College. He said in the past only inmates who could pay for the classes on their own had access.

“It’s a huge opportunity, not just for incarcerated individuals but for their families and communities.”

Chris Gautz is the spokesperson for the Michigan Department of Corrections. He said the program is about giving inmates an opportunity.

“I know that some people criticize the idea that prisoners are getting this education. About 95% of our prison population will one day be paroled because they weren’t given a life sentence. Who would you rather having living next to you? A college educated parolee or someone who didn’t have any access to that and didn’t come out any better than when they came in?”

Inmates will have access to the grants for the Fall semester.