Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project awarded grant from the Laughing Gull Foundation

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The Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project, or APAEP, at Auburn University has received its second award from the Laughing Gull Foundation to support the education programming offered for people who are incarcerated in Alabama. The $240,000 grant, given over a 3 year period, doubles the last multi-year grant from the foundation.

The Laughing Gull Foundation “envisions healthy and sustainable communities where everyone can be their whole selves and live in balance with the earth. We envision a world in which everyone is supported, included, embraced, and protected, especially those who have been pushed to the margins of our human family. We envision a day when both human rights and human rites of passage include everyone equally and fully.”

“The Laughing Gull Foundation is privileged to continue to support the important work of the Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project,” said Hez Norton, interim executive director of the Laughing Gull Foundation. “Their work to provide educational opportunities to incarcerated students across the state is inspiring as it provides opportunities, and changes lives as well as communities.”

The grant will support both the credit and non-credit branches of programming, maximizing reach into the incarcerated learning community. There is a direct link between educational opportunities while incarcerated and success post-release.

“As the Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project has grown, and the program emerged through the U.S. Department of Education’s Experimental Sites research program, Auburn and APAEP are reaching further and more substantially into the educationally under resourced communities impacted by incarceration,” said Kyes Stevens, founder and director of APAEP. “This grant will help us advance our goals based on the land-grant mission of the university of increasing access to higher education.”

Founded in 2002, the Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project, under a partnership with the Alabama Department of Corrections, offers semester-long courses in arts, humanities, science, technology, design, engineering and math in 10 correctional facilities across the state.

The Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project is a program of Auburn University’s College of Architecture, Design and Construction.

The College of Architecture, Design and Construction embraces the land grant mission of Auburn University by actively seeking ways to address and anticipate the critical issues of the region, the nation, and the world. The College's highly regarded programs in architecture, industrial design, landscape architecture, construction management and real estate development as well as unique off-campus programs such as Rural Studio, Urban Studio, futures studio and the Alabama Prison Arts + Education Program expand the boundaries of the classroom and offer an unmatched educational experience.