The Prison Education Project is proud to present the annual Maggie Garb Memorial Lecture Series.

Each academic year, PEP presents a lecture in honor of the late Dr. Maggie Garb, a co-founder and former Director of our program. Each lecture focuses on one or more of Dr. Garb’s major areas of interest: history, education, and mass incarceration.

This lecture series was founded with generous support of the Maggie Garb Foundation.

Spring 2024

The Washington University Prison Education Project is delighted to present the 2024 Maggie Garb Memorial Lecture, featuring Dr. Marisa Omori in a presentation about AI, algorithmic bias, and how racial inequality is quietly created and maintained within the criminal legal system.

Learn more about the Spring 2024 lecture, Invisible Inequalities: Mechanisms of Racial Inequality in the Criminal Legal System, here.

Spring 2023

The Washington University Prison Education Project was delighted to present the 2023 Maggie Garb Memorial Lecture, featuring playwright and journalist Sarah Shourd in conversation with Shubra Ohri, an attorney with the Missouri office of the Roderick & Solange MacArthur Justice Center.

The event featured a discussion of the state of anti-carceral efforts locally and nationally and the role of journalism, art, and public activism in resisting mass incarceration.

Learn more about the Spring 2023 lecture here.

Fall 2021

This lecture series featured dynamic scholars, practitioners, grassroots organizers, and impacted students from across the country who each provided a virtual 30-minute mini-lecture on “The Power of Higher Education in Prison.” Additionally, this series featured an hour-long lecture from a system-impacted grassroots organizer Syrita Steib.

Keynote Speaker: Syrita Steib

Sisters of Carceral Liberation: Building a Movement of Social Justice for and About Black Women in Higher Education in Prison
Dr. Breea Willingham, Associate Professor of Criminal Justice, State University of New York at Plattsburgh

Third Order Change: Building a Brighter Future by Investing in Our Incarcerated Leaders’ Education
Dr. Christopher Beasley, Assistant Professor at the University of Washington Tacoma

Cutting through the stereotypes of incarcerated people: The benefits of student mentorship and support networks inside prison
Dr. Grant Tietjen, Associate Professor of Sociology and Criminal Justice, St. Ambrose University–Davenport

Prioritizing Higher Education and Career Goals in Prison & Reentry
Terrell Blount, MPA

The Transformative and Rehabilitative Power of Higher Education in Prison
Bryan Love Jordan

Trauma, Incarceration, and Ability to Learn: Rediscovering Learning as Adults
Em Daniels, MS

Spring 2019

PEP hosted a lecture by Vanderbilt University Professor Rhonda Williams, who spoke about the struggles for freedom in the 20th century.


Fall 2018

PEP organized two lectures for MECC students as part of an ongoing lecture series. For one event, poet Mary Jo Bang came to read and discuss her book A Doll For Throwing. In November, Washington University history professor Peter Kastor discussed the play Hamilton and its value and association with American history.