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Pathways From Prison to College In Action: Highlighting the Central Valley

July 25 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am

Pathways From Prison to College In Action: Highlighting the Central Valley

Thursday, July 25, 2024 | 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. PST
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Join the Michelson 20MM Foundation and Central Valley Communication Foundation on July 25, 2024, as we highlight organizations in the Central Valley dedicated to supporting systems-impacted individuals. Unlike Northern and Southern California, the Central Valley has a long-standing prison ecosystem, featuring dozens of prisons and community corrections facilities constructed over the past three decades. 

Although California ceased prison construction in 2005, counties throughout the state have expanded their jail capacities through state-funded, locally implemented projects, which contribute to higher incarceration rates.

Despite the funding constraints, organizations within the Central Valley are dedicated to implementing California’s Best Practices: Pathways From Prison to College. During Pathways From Prison to College in Action, we will showcase these organizations in the Central Valley and share their work to increase attention and reinvestment in their often overlooked region.

The “In Action” series highlights programs and organizations across the state that are implementing strategies from California’s Best Practices: Pathways From Prison to College. We are committed to ensuring that all currently and formerly incarcerated individuals have an equal opportunity to succeed as students and beyond.


Dr. Christoffer Bovbjerg

Associate Director, Interdisciplinary Humanities Center, UC Santa Barbara

Dr. Christoffer Bovbjerg is the Associate Director of the UCSB Interdisciplinary Humanities Center. At the Center, he develops and administers their programs and serves as the Coordinator for the Foundations in the Humanities Program.

Dr. Susan Derwin

Director, Foundations in the Humanities Prison Correspondence Program, UC Santa Barbara

Dr. Susan Derwin is professor of Comparative Literature and German Studies at UCSB and serves as the director of UCSB’s Interdisciplinary Humanities Center. Dr. Derwin oversees publicly engaged programs in the humanities, including Foundations in the Humanities, a correspondence program in literary studies for individuals incarcerated in California prisons.

Dr. Patrick Fontes 


Professor Fontes received his Ph.D. in American History from Stanford University. His research interests include US Immigration history, California Central Valley history, and the criminalization of Mexican immigrants. Dr. Fontes is currently researching the Chicano movement at Fresno State College during the 1960s through the early 1970s.

Dean Jacobs

Former Student, Foundations in the Humanities Prison Correspondence Program, UC Santa Barbara

Dean Jacobs is a certified Addiction Treatment Counselor (CATC II) working at a residential treatment center in Long Beach. As a former incarcerated student, graduate of UCSB’s Foundations in the Humanities program, and prior gang member, Jacobs has dedicated his career to helping other inmates change their lives. In December of 2018, Governor Jerry Brown granted him clemency, three years later he was granted release. 


Kenia Miranda Verdugo

Smart Justice Program Manager, Michelson 20MM



July 25
10:00 am - 11:00 am
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Michelson 20MM Foundation
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