Making JSTOR Available for all College Students in Prison
Over the past few years, as JSTOR Labs has worked to pilot offline and direct access to JSTOR for incarcerated learners, I've had one thought, over and over:
I wish we could go faster.
Lack of quality library resources is just one obstacle of many that students in prison face as they endeavor to gain their education and improve their lives. And yet, learning how to conduct research is a critical component of post-secondary education, building information literacy, problem-solving, and critical thinking skills. JSTOR may not be able to do much to affect the other obstacles incarcerated learners face, but this is one we can help with. I just wish we could go faster, helping more students more quickly.
Today, I'm thrilled to share the news that the Mellon Foundation has awarded to ITHAKA a $1.5 million grant that will allow us to do exactly that: go faster. This grant will fund a three-year project to make JSTOR freely available to all US HEP programs (yes, freely). Every week, a new HEP program or department of corrections reaches out to us about providing JSTOR to their students. While we're not quite ready to provide solutions to all of these programs (it is a three-year project, after all – we've got our work cut out for us), I am so excited to have a plan to reach them all. You can read more about this plan on the JSTOR Access in Prison Initiative project page, or please do not hesitate to reach out to us and contact us directly.
Here's to going faster towards worthy goals.