Inside Out Program

Inside Out brings college students together with incarcerated men and women to study as peers behind prison walls. It is an opportunity for students to reconsider what they have come to know about crime and justice, and an opportunity for those inside prison to place their life experiences in a larger framework.

Inside Out creates a paradigm shift for participants, and deepens the conversation. It transforms our collective approaches to understanding crime, justice, freedom, and inequality. By fostering individual transformation, the program serves as an engine for social change.

Learn More About Inside Out at UO


“I was afraid going into this class that we wouldn’t have much in common, but steel bars are clearly permeable because we have more to discuss than I could have ever imagined. ”

— Peter, CHC Student


Try Something Different

Inside Out is a national program, with courses offered at more than one hundred institutions across the country. The University of Oregon has the largest program, with eight trained instructors and courses available in sociology, geography, and literature.

The core of Inside Out is an academic course, meeting once a week, through which 12 to 18 “outside” (undergraduate) students and the same number of “inside” (incarcerated) students attend class together at either the Oregon State Penitentiary or the Oregon State Correctional Institution. Three courses each year are offered exclusively to Clark Honors College students. Both course sites are located in the Salem area, and transportation is provided by the University.

Inside Out Class


“The true learning that took place in this class was in the conversations we had about life. How I could see myself in the Outside students' shoes and how they could see themselves in mine.”

— Sam, "Inside" Student


Connect with Social Justice Initiatives at UO

Carnegie Global Oregon

CGO partners with the New York-based Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, bringing leaders from many walks of life to work with students in a mutual exploration of the ethical issues that challenge us in our lives and our careers. CGO students have the opportunity to engage with noted figures through small group conversations, weekly shared meals, internship opportunities, and employment. To join the group students sign up for the Carnegie Global Oregon Freshman Interest Group in the spring or summer prior to their freshman year, or seek out CGO students and staff to discuss the possibility of joining at a later time.

Oxford Spring Break

Each year during spring break, the University of Oregon sends a small group of students to the University of Oxford for a week-long workshop on global justice and human rights. The program is open to Clark Honors College students, and graduate students in the Conflict and Dispute Resolution (CRES) and Law programs.

Genocide Prevention Initiative

The GPI examines personal and political responses to mass atrocities from the perspective of numerous disciplines. The goal of the project is to formulate strategies that will motivate students, citizens, and governments to become more responsive to issues related to the prevention of genocide and politicide. It aims to bridge scholarship and advocacy, while raising awareness, engaging the campus community, and encouraging action.


“I want to spread what I've learned to as many people as possible. I want to change how they think, in the same way that this experience has changed how I think.”

— Katy, CHC Student


Power of Attorney

Madeline Bailey

Participating in the Inside Out program during her time in the Clark Honors College was an eye-opener for Madeline Bailey, BA '11. In fact, it was that life-changing experience inside prison walls that motivated Madeline to pursue a law degree. "I don’t think locking people away is ever the answer," she says. "Our society tends to ignore the reality that there are very few exceptional cases where people should be separated from the community. Most of the people in prison should not be there, and those who are there have been failed by the system over and over again."

Madeline recently graduated with her Juris Doctor from UC Berkeley, and is working as a Legal Fellow at the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) in Montgomery, Alabama. A national leader in addressing the death penalty and juvenile incarceration, EJI is also involved in public education around the connections between race and the justice system

Read Madeline's Story