California Inmates Raise Money for $32,000 Scholarship for High School Student to Attend College
Inmates took money from their own work over three years— doing jobs like sweeping and making furniture — to raise the money.
A group of California inmates, some of whom were making between 8 cents and a $1 an hour, worked together to pay $32,000 intuition for a college student.
Jason Bryant, an inmate who is part of book club with students from Palma School in Salinas, was looking for a way to give back after reading a book that inspired him, CBS News reported.
Bryant, who is serving his 26-year sentence at Soledad State Prison for a robbery that resulted in death, told CBS News it’s been refreshing to have people see them as they are, “human.”
Bryant, alongside his co-defendant, were inspired to start a scholarship fund for a Palma student in need and 800 inmates took money from their own work over three years— doing jobs like sweeping and making furniture — to raise $32,000.
"Incarcerated people were so drawn to … the idea of going a mile deep in a young man's life, that they were giving up their month's pay to contribute,”Bryant told CBS News.
The founders of the book program, called "Exercises In Empathy,” Mia Mirassou and Jim Micheletti, said they knew they wanted the money to go to Sy Green, a then-sophomore who was going through a hard time, as both of his parents lost their jobs and were going through medical and financial struggles.
Green, who is now a college student, told CBS News he was shocked a the kindness of the inmates.
"I was mind-blown. … And then immediately, I was just grateful," he said.
He added that the hopes to pay the deed forward and “carry that legacy on.”
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