Incarcerated Students Receive Second Chance Through New Madison College Program

Inmate graduation - Second Chance Pell Grant

Leaders from Madison College and the Wisconsin Department of Corrections (DOC) honored graduates at the Racine Youthful Offender Correctional Facility (RYOCF) on Friday, May 20.

The honorees included the first group of students in DOC care to earn a technical diploma through Madison College’s Second Chance Pell Grant program. The 12 students who participated in the program earned their Small Business Entrepreneurship diplomas while at RYOCF.

“These young men come from highly diverse backgrounds, but they all have one thing in common,” said Dr. Jack Daniels III, president of Madison College. “They are looking for positive change in their lives and the college’s Second Chance Pell Grant program is helping them achieve that.”

While the dozen graduates represent the first group of people in DOC care to take part in Second Chance Pell through Madison College, the college is expanding the program and will have a projected enrollment of 60 students across six DOC facilities in the fall.

“I’m proud of our agency’s collaboration with the state’s technical colleges to make these opportunities available to those in our care,” said RYOCF Warden Je’Leslie Taylor. “I’m also proud of the students honored today. It takes partnerships and resources, but it came down to each of these young men setting goals for themselves.”

Madison College was among a new group of schools included in the U.S. Department of Education's expansion of the Second Chance Pell Experimental Sites Initiative in 2020. The initiative provides need-based Pell grants to people in state and federal prisons. The U.S. Department of Education announced last month that more colleges are being added to this initiative, bringing the total number of schools able to participate in the Second Chance Pell Experiment to 200 nationwide.

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Racine Journal Times

Contact Jamie Reinart, Madison College's Prison Education Program Liaison, at or the Wisconsin Dept. of Corrections at