THEI in the News

August 13, 2019

Breaking Into Prison: Interview with Julie Doochin

Paige Bainbridge

Check out this interview with THEI founder Dr. Julie Doochin! We remain so grateful to Julie for her vision and persistence; incarcerated students across the state have the opportunity to succeed and thrive because of what she created.

April 01, 2019

Tennessee would benefit from restoring Pell Grants to incarcerated people

Molly Lasagna, THEI Executive Director

Recently, I had the opportunity to meet with U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander’s staff to discuss the need to expand access to post-secondary education in prison.  Joined by Shon Holman, a formerly incarcerated student himself, we emphasized just how transformative education can be for people in prison...

February 28, 2019

Gov. Bill Lee Announces Strategies to Improve Criminal Justice System

Governor's Office

Today, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee announced comprehensive plans to address criminal justice and public safety ahead of his State of the State address on Monday. “We must significantly improve public safety in our state and I believe that starts with our criminal justice system,” said Lee. “We will focus on helping individuals to ensure there is a pathway to a productive life beyond crime and ultimately make our state a safer place.”...

February 28, 2019

Gov. Bill Lee wants to invest millions in education, support for Tennessee criminal offenders

Adam Tamburin, Tennessean

Gov. Bill Lee wants to invest millions into Tennessee court and prison systems to give criminal offenders an education, support and a chance to clear their records. Lee's office on Thursday announced a suite of criminal justice reforms that will be included in his legislative priorities for the year. They are consistent with Lee's position on the campaign trial of focusing rehabilitating criminals...

February 26, 2019

No Time to Wait: The State of Higher Education in Tennessee

Complete Tennessee

Over the last decade, Tennessee has advanced a series of K-12 and higher education policy reforms that have created a wealth of opportunities for Tennesseans to pursue more affordable postsecondary credentials. These efforts have positioned Tennessee as a national leader for collaboration, bold policy action, and commitment to promoting student success....

February 26, 2019

Complete Tennessee report: Set clear goals to increase college graduation rates among struggling students

Jason Gonzales, Tennessean

If Tennessee wants to increase the number of its residents with a college degree or certificate, one mostly untapped place to look is at ensuring those incarcerated leave prison with an education. That is at least one area of focus listed in a report released Tuesday...

November 12, 2018

Increasing Postsecondary Opportunities for Incarcerated Tennesseeans

Tennessee Education Equity Coalition

On any given day in Tennessee, there are nearly 60,000 people incarcerated in our state. Read our report to see how the Coalition is Casting a Vision for expanding postsecondary opportunities to the incarcerated. The potential to transform lives and communities lies within our reach...

November 15, 2018

Higher Ed Advocates Want Inmates To Be Eligible For Tennessee’s Scholarships

Nashville Public Radio

Tennessee has been praised for its free college initiatives for graduating high school seniors and adults. But, there's one part of the population that's being left out — inmates...

April 19, 2018

22 Tennessee Students Graduate With Associates Degrees

San Quentin News

After decades without a college prison program, 22 men at a Tennessee prison became the first class to graduate from a state penitentiary since the 1980s, according to a press release...

January 10, 2018

Pomp and Circumstance: TN Prisoners Earn Degrees Behind Bars

Public News Service

"Wednesday more than 20 male prisoners in Tennessee are celebrating the completion of the associate degrees they earned while behind bars. It's the first such group to receive the honor in more than 20 years. ..."

February 01, 2017

DSCC to Offer College Program to Local Prison

State Gazette

"On Jan. 17, at the Northwest Correctional Complex in Tiptonville, Tennessee, Dyersburg State Community College reinitiated what had been a successful and meaningful college-in-prison program during the 1980s and early 1990s..."

January 12, 2017

Inmates Graduate TDOC Program

The Jackson Sun

"On Thursday, 18 Nashville State Community College students walked in a ceremony where they were awarded their 41-Hour General Education certificates, a marker denoting the completion of the general education core ..."

September 01, 2016

Model Behavior 2016: Julie Doochin

nFocus Magazine

"After a decade spent teaching AP and IB European history and psychology to high school students, Julie Doochin needed a break. She remained passionate about education, but she wanted to approach it from an organizational..."

March 03, 2016

The Context of Love Is The World: Liturgies of Incarceration


"Many years before I set foot in a prison, I passed an afternoon in conversation with the writer, provocateur, and Baptist minister Will Campbell at his home in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee. A friend to Martin Luther King Jr., Thomas ..."

August 31, 2015

Entering Prison With a Syllabus

The Huffington Post

"Each one, teach one. So goes the compact black prisoners made with each other during the swell of Apartheid in the 1960’s. In a lime quarry on Robben Island, several miles off the coast of Cape Town, South Africa, Nelson Mandela ..."

January 01, 2015

Impact Nashville Grants $26,000 To The Tennessee Higher Education Initiative

Women Impact Nashville

"Impact Nashville announced their first grant winner in October. Chosen from more than 90 applicants, The Tennessee Higher Education Initiative was awarded the $26,000 grant ..."

April 02, 2012

Middle Tenn. Inmates Taking Community College Classes

Community College Week

"Inmates at a Middle Tennessee prison are being awarded college credits under a new program at Nashville State Community College. Instructor Julie Doochin started the nonprofit Tennessee Higher Education Initiative this year..."

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Rehabilitative Programming in Tennessee

A film by Justice Action Network

Hope Through Education

Tennessee Department of Correction

23 Inmates Graduate from College

News Channel 5

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