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Let us recall...

This week marks the 49th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s assassination in Memphis, TN. Seems like a good time to reflect on a few good (but less well-known) MLK quotes:

"Any law that uplifts human personality is just. Any law that degrades human personality is unjust."  (Letter from Birmingham Jail, 1963)

"We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed." (Letter from Birmingham Jail, 1963)

"Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice, and justice at its best is power correcting everything that stands against love. And this is what we must see as we move on." (Where Do We Go from Here?, 1967)

"Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." (Source unknown)

"Somehow we must believe that the most misguided among them can learn to respect the dignity and the worth of all human personality." (Eulogy of the Martyred Children, 1963)

There will be no classes or tutoring next Friday, April 14, as the DOC observes the Good Friday holiday. Please remind your students of this if you see them earlier in the week.

Check out this interesting NY Times article about the Commission's recent decision to close Riker's Island within the next ten years. If all goes as planned, this is certainly a victory for many people who have been pushing for action!
Submit your March transportation expenses! Please remember the following guidelines:
  • We cannot reimburse mileage. We will, however, reimburse the cost of a car service (i.e., Uber, Lyft, taxi, etc.) when used as a last resort. We will also reimburse the cost of public transportation.
  • You must submit your expense request through the Concur system. If you are new to the system, create an account and then submit the expenses.
If you have questions or problems, feel free to contact Tara at

Friday, April 7, 4:00pm-5:30pm
Friend Center Convocation Room

In any of the career possibilities you choose to pursue, service and community-engagement will play an important role as an intellectual and leader in your field. How will you define that role of community or civic-engagement in your career or, possibly, as your career? Come hear from graduate alumni, faculty, and campus partners on the role of service in their careers. Kelly LaRue *11 MOL shares her story of service and discovering a new path in this short video. Open cocktail reception to follow. Please RSVP.
Confirmed panelists are:
Elisha Smith Arrillaga *09 WWS
Director, Career Ladders Project
Peter R. Lighte *81 EAS
Board Member, Half the Sky Foundation
Jenny Greene, Ph.D., Astrophysics, Harvard University
Professor, Astrophysical Sciences
Princeton University Prison Teaching Initiative
Trisha Thorme, MA, Anthropology, Cornell University
Director, Community-Based Learning Initiative (CBLI)
Charlotte Collins, MA, Religious Ethics, Yale University
Associate Director, Pace Center for Civic Engagement

Thursday, April 13, 9am-4pm
Saint Peter's University (Mac Mahon Student Center, 47 Glenwood Ave., Jersey City)

The conference is sponsored by the NJ Reentry Corporation, a nonprofit agency with a social mission to remove all barriers to employment for citizens returning from incarceration. You can register HERE! *Please let Tara know if you're planning to go so we can arrange a carpool!

4TH ANNUAL SPEAR CONFERENCE - Toward Abolition: Dismantling the Carceral State
Friday, April 14 - Saturday, April 15 @ Princeton

Opening plenary by Ruth Wilson Gilmore, Industrializing Punishment: Charting the Current Crisis in Racial Capitalism; Closing plenary by Alec Karakatsanis, Civil Rights Corps
From the SPEAR Conference site: This spring, our conference aims to explore prison abolition, decarceration, and alternatives to incarceration such as restorative justice. In particular, we want to examine in close detail the array of ways in which prison abolition is imagined and how the notion of abolition interacts with and is driven by particular identities. We will be collaborating with various student groups at Princeton to bring a diverse array of speakers and panelists to campus, creating a space at Princeton for conference participants to create and share in a vision of decarceration and decriminalization.

Thursday, April 27 @ Princeton (time & specific location TBA)
Stay tuned for details!

Thursday, May 11 - Rutgers University, Newark
From the website: "Telling Untold Histories" is New Jersey's annual un-conference that looks for human stories yet to be told, explores these histories, and asks why some stories remain untold. How can the community members who lived these histories shape how museums, historic sites, libraries, and schools tell them in the future? You can check out last year's un-conference proceedings on the website, too!

Monday, April 24, 12-1:30pm
Thursday, May 4, 5-6:30pm

AAAS and the National Science Foundation (NSF) invite you to participate in a 90-minute proposal preparation webinar for the NSF Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program.  The webinars will be presented by NSF program staff.  Proposals are due on August 29, 2017. Register at See the new solicitation:
I hope PTI Matters will continue to grow and be ever more useful to our teachers and friends. Please feel free to email your news blurbs and other suggestions to so we can highlight them here!

More Resources

SPECIAL EVENT: Eastern State Penitentiary opens its annual Pop-Up Museum for 10 days each year so visitors can see some of the many thousands of historic treasures locked up for safekeeping. This year's theme is "Prison Breaking News"; the display will include news paraphernalia that depict various activities inside the prison. This year's event takes place April 8-17 during regular museum hours.

SPECIAL EVENT: Public Art & Prison Reform at Eastern State Penitentiary (Phila, PA). This event is free and open to the public! April 20, 6:30-8:30pm

"Out of prison, then back in? Unique plan aims to break cycle" (David Crary, AP News, 3/3/2017)

Happy Walk to Work Day!

According to, Princeton will be windy and chilly today, so you might need to bundle up for it...but who doesn't want to walk to work?!

Copyright © 2017 Prison Teaching Initiative @ Princeton University, All rights reserved.

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