"To deny education to any people is one of the greatest crimes against human nature." Frederick Douglass, Prophet of Emancipation

Courtney Foster, CIU Student, speaking at 2019 CIU Graduation
Courtney Foster, CIU Student, speaking at 2019 CIU Graduation

College Initiative Upstate creates pathways to and through college for court-involved and formerly incarcerated people

College Initiative Upstate (CIU) is a learning community of students, educators, and volunteers who are working together to build pathways to and through college for court-involved and formerly incarcerated people living in Tompkins County, NY. CIU’s model provides the resources for college preparation, college enrollment, and community leadership – all free of charge. The only requirement besides justice involvement is a high school diploma or equivalency. By effectively addressing the individual and structural barriers to higher education, including the gap in preparation for college enrollment for individuals impacted by the legal system, CIU offers a life-changing path for non-traditional students experiencing poverty, substance abuse, and legal involvement.

This button will direct you to our contact page to send us an inquiry. This is the first step to getting involved with CIU.

Bulletin Board 2020 - 2021

Congratulations to . . .

  • All CIU students who completed the Spring 2020 semester!
  • Colleen McGolgin who completed a Paralegal Certificate with a 4.0 GPA!
  • Janette Parson & Yasmine Tarrats, who both completed their A.S. degrees in Liberal Arts and Sciences, and who were accepted into TC3’s Nursing Program!
  • The 12 CIU students who are expected to graduate in December 2020!

Announcements . . .

Tompkins Cortland Community College has released reopening plans for the Fall 2020 Semester. The main campus in Dryden and the extension centers in Ithaca and Cortland will be open for in-person learning: https://www.tompkinscortland.edu/coronavirus

Image: CIU Mascot, by Vita Giorgi
CIU Mascot, by Vita Giorgi