Art for Justice Fund, a sponsored project of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, has awarded Prison Creative Arts Project $50,000 for one-time support of its programs. PCAP is using the funds to strengthen programing for people released from prison, to bring expertise of formerly incarcerated individuals to events and classrooms, and to amplify the stories of PCAP program participants.
PCAP has hired new staff members to carry out the project, including Cozine Welch, Jr., a writer published nine times in PCAP’s Michigan Review of Prisoner Creative Writing. Welch co-instructs two undergraduate courses with PCAP Director Ashley Lucas and serves as Managing Editor of the Review. Lucas describes the benefits this way, “In both of these capacities, we have seen that having a formerly incarcerated person partnering with PCAP faculty and students in a leadership role dramatically deepens both student learning and the trust and engagement of our community partners in prisons and reentry communities.”
Welch says, "To be able to share and show the real worth of and validity of my experiential and self-taught education in a scholastic environment, and to have the process be one of reciprocity between both the students I teach and the staff members I work with, is one of the most beautiful aspects of my involvement with PCAP and the University as a whole. I look forward to being a part of furthering and expanding perspectives and experiences for both student and staff alike and sincerely hope I will be able to add more in the years to come."