two hands gripping cell bars.

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.

Course Listing

Professor: Anita Chari, 4.00 credits, CRN 32070: Mondays @ CHA/OSCI This class explores the autobiography as a form of both personal and political expression. We begin by complicating, questioning and demystifying the divide between the personal and political by linking personal stories and histories with narratives of broader social structures, such as capitalism, patriarchy, slavery, and colonialism. We will read autobiographies from diverse sources, including letters, quasi-fictionalized autobiographies, poetry, and autobiographies of political activists. We will also engage with theories of social structure and agency in order to theorize the interface between personal experience and political agency. A number of the books that we will read are focused on experiences of incarceration and the criminal justice system from different angles. Finally, practices of embodied storytelling and reflection will be an important part of our exploration.
Professor: Dawn Marlan 4.00 credits CRN 12286: Tuesday, 6:00-8:30pm @ LIB 322 This course is open only to CHC students. An an application and instructor approval are required to register for this course. If you are not familiar with the Inside-Out Program, please check out the information on the Honors College website here: and watch the Inside-Out documentary here: Students may only take one Inside-Out class in a given term. However, given the limited spaces available, students are encouraged to apply to multiple sections if their schedule allows.Institutions manage and process people. Medicine, like many institutions, tends to define people in terms of their problems – disease, drugs, mental illness. Fiction inverts this structure, seeing character as something that transcends problems. Read more


“ 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 13 “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. Selected Inside-Out courses 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.

“ 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