Cuomo announces plan to help inmates earn college degrees

andrew cuomo minimum wage
Gov. Andrew Cuomo is hoping the program will reduce recidivism rates. Credit: Getty Images

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Sunday announced a new initiative to bring college classes to prisons and help reduce the chances of inmates ending up behind bars in the future.

The program would provide college level education in 10 prisons across the state and give inmates the chance to earn an associate’s or bachelor’s degree.

“Giving men and women in prison the opportunity to earn a college degree costs our state less and benefits our society more,” Cuomo said. “Someone who leaves prison with a college degree has a real shot at a second lease on life because their education gives them the opportunity to get a job and avoid falling back into a cycle of crime.”

The governor’s office estimates that the program will cost $5,000 per inmate, per year.

New York currently spends $60,000 per year to incarcerate one inmate, and those who leave prison have a 40 percent chance of coming back, according to a news release.

The state plans to issue a Request for Proposals next month to educational associations that provide college professors and classes.

“A college education can open a variety of new paths and opportunities for incarcerated individuals that empower them to be upstanding citizens, rather than fall into a recurring cycle of criminal activity,” said Queens Assemblyman Jeffrion Aubrey.

“This would not only save taxpayer dollars by reducing the size of our prison population, it would also help to address the disproportionate representation of minorities in prison,” he said.

New York’s inmate population is 49.2 percent African American, 24 percent Hispanic, 24.1 percent white and 2.7 percent identify as other, according to the governor’s office.

Under the program, inmates would earn their degrees in two-and-a-half to three years.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Bloomberg: Going green will grant you longer life…

Former NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg tells Metro that cities are where fighting global warming can make a difference, and increase people’s lifespan.

International

Ban Ki Moon: "Climate change is an issue…

My message to you is: make your voice heard and your actions count. Change is in the air. Solutions exist. The race is on. It’s time to lead.

Local

Earth Day New York food toolkits to help…

Hundreds of classrooms across New York City already have indoor container gardens that allow students to grow food right where they learn. But Earth Day…

Local

NYPD announces street closures for United Nations General…

The United Nations representatives are in town, and multiple city streets will be closed to traffic through Saturday, Sept. 26. The NYPD is urging those…

Television

10 Facts you won’t learn about Frankie Grande…

Frankie Grande is the worst and/or the best. Whether or not you're a fan, you'll want to know these facts about the polarizing player from "Big Brother 16."

Movies

Antoine Fuqua can kill someone with just a…

It's amazing what you can get done with the right tools. In designing the climactic battle in "the Equalizer," in which Denzel Washington's retired special…

Movies

Guess Ben Kingsley's worst filmmaking experience

Here's a fun game: Sir Ben Kingsley has made a lot of films since "Gandhi" in 1982, but at least one of them was a…

Books

Does Lena Dunham have any secrets left?

Get a sneak peek at her new book to determine if it’s worth the read.

NFL

3 things that went wrong in Jets loss…

The Jets have very little room for error with a far-from-explosive offense.

NFL

Eli Manning finally feeling good in West Coast…

The Giants have very little time before their next game, but they still took a moment to relish the team’s biggest offensive outburst since Week 1 of 2013.

College

College football top 25 poll: Oregon, Alabama close…

College football top 25 poll: Oregon, Alabama close in on FSU

NFL

Jay Cutler takes Marc Trestman's coaching to heart

While Jay Cutler turned to an autobiography on the man who would be his head coach, Trestman had personal experience with the player.

Wellbeing

Exercising leads to more drinking — and we…

  We’re rewarding ourselves with more than dessert on days we exercise, according to a new study. On days when people exercise more, typically Thursday…

Wellbeing

5 gadgets to protect you from sharks, concussions,…

The medical industry is inundated with devices looking after all aspects of your wellbeing, from monitoring your sleep patterns to warding off shark attacks. We…

Wellbeing

Narcissism and the ugly side of vanity

I have a friend who constantly talks about herself and rarely asks any questions about my life. She is constantly preening, obsessed with her body,…

Wellbeing

Lacking new ideas, Apple Watch disappoints health experts

Technology pundits were quick to predict the demise of most fitness wristbands and smartwatches when the Apple Watch was announced. But health care professionals and…