Sean Pica and Nyack College President Dr. Michael Scales visit the White House
Hudson Link Executive Director Sean Pica joins Nyack College President Dr. Michael Scales on a visit to the White House along with other college and university officials to sign a historic pledge supporting higher education for formerly incarcerated people.
Representatives from 15 higher education public and private institutions from across the country, including Hudson Link partners Nyack College and Columbia University, stood with Pica and U.S. Secretary of Education John King in the West Wing to sign the Fair Chance Higher Education Pledge, which removes unnecessary barriers to a college education for formerly incarcerated people. “We know that African-American and Latino young people and adults are overrepresented in our prison population and among folks who have criminal records. I think this will help those who have a criminal record have an opportunity to access higher education,” King said.
“This is a life-changing moment in history for institutions of higher learning and the formerly incarcerated,” said Pica. “President Obama continues his groundbreaking support of criminal justice reform and New York is once again on the vanguard of these historic initiatives.”
Cecilia Munoz, Director of the White House Domestic Policy Council; Geraldine Downey, Vice Provost for Columbia University; and Nyack College Provost David Turk were also in attendance for the historic pledge, which has been signed by a total of 25 institutions. The White House prepared a fact sheet which contains Columbia University’s pledge to “support access to college education and employment for those who need a second chance and, more broadly, for those from communities bearing the brunt of mass incarceration.”