Panel: Mount Tamalpais College: Education and Community at San Quentin

Film screening and panel discussion
Saturday, 2/11/2023
11:00 - 12:30
Koret Auditorium
Main Library

100 Larkin Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
United States

Contact Telephone

Alumni of Mount Tamalpais College discuss the role of education in their lives during and post-incarceration, the powerful work happening in classrooms at San Quentin and the importance of community both in prison and post-release. The panel discussion will follow a screening of The Other Side of the Wall, a short film by R.J. Lozada about the friendships forged in the classroom.

This is a hybrid event. Registration is required for Zoom attendance. In-person attendance does not require registration; seats available first come, first served.

Mount Tamalpais College is an academic institution unlike any other in the United States. In 1994, the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act barred people incarcerated in the U.S. from receiving Pell Grants. This piece of legislation effectively ended prison higher education across the country, as nearly all of the approximately 350 programs shut down for lack of funds. In the wake of this disaster and, for over 20 years, the Prison University Project was the only on-site degree-granting program in a California prison. For the first two decades of operation, it operated as an extension site of nearby Patten University. The name was changed to Mount Tamalpais College in 2020.

Today, with unprecedented social, political and philanthropic interest, Mount Tamalpais leadership has helped to expand access to higher education—not only at San Quentin, but within California’s prison system and nationwide. In January 2022, after an intensive application and review process, Mount Tamalpais College was granted Initial Accreditation by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC), making it the first independent liberal arts institution dedicated specifically to serving incarcerated students.



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Events and workshops curated around SFPL’s One City One Book selection. One City One Book: San Francisco Reads is a citywide literary event that encourages members of the San Francisco community to read the same book at the same time. For more information, see

Learn about and increase your awareness of issues related to jail, prison, incarceration and reentry resources. Find out more about our services:

This program is sponsored by Friends of the San Francisco Public Library.

Attending Programs

For questions about the program or help registering, contact All SFPL locations are wheelchair accessible. For accommodations (such as ASL or language interpretation), call (415) 557-4557 or contact Requesting at least 3 business days in advance will help ensure availability.

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