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

Courtney Foster, a CIU nursing student speaking at 2019 CIU Graduation
Courtney Foster, a CIU nursing 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 use, 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 2021 - 2022

Congratulations to . . .

CIU students who completed college degrees during the Fall 2021 semester!

  • Daniele Drake: A.A.S. Chemical Dependency Counseling, Tompkins Community College
  • Samantha Gentz: A.A.S. Human Services, Tompkins Community College
  • Verne Westhoven: A.A. Business Administration, Tompkins Community College

Announcements . . .

For TC3 students:

  • Last day to add courses - Tuesday, February 8, 2022
  • Last day to drop courses - Tuesday, February 15, 2022
  • Last day to withdraw from a course - Wednesday, April 8, 2022

 

Announcing!  New "CIU Student Support Group" every third Tuesday of the month via zoom.  Bring your lunch and come and talk about any school-related issues that are on your mind! Please call for more information: 607-351-3201.

 

Important Dates for Spring 2022

Coming this Spring! College Prep - 3 mornings/week for 6 weeks

Math                      Reading/Writing                College Success

 

Call or text us for a spot or to refer someone you know. (607) 351-3201

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CIU's office at the TC3 Extension Center

Above the M&T Bank Building on the Ithaca Commons, Room 501.

Office Hours at TC3 Extension: M - Thurs. 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

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Meet the CIU Staff

Benay Rubenstein, Director: (607) 351-5028

Maria Vargas, Academic Counselor: (607) 351-3201

Amy Heffron, Outreach Coordinator

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"Radio Play" 

The Civic Ensemble ReEntry Theatre Program and College Initiative Upstate have partnered to explore how personal narratives of those who have experienced incarceration can impact a community.

Steppin' Into My Shoes

A play for the radio

Directed by Gabriella da Silva Carr & Julia Taylor

Click the link to listen to each episode

Episode 1: Family

Episode 2: Hot Topics

Episode 3: Hopes & Dreams

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