What is RECOUP?
The Reentry and College Outside Program (RECOUP) is an Emerson Prison Initiative program to support formerly incarcerated college students as they transition to life outside of prison. EPI recognizes that students can only consider continuing to pursue higher educational and employment goals once basic needs are met. Taking this stance as our foundation, RECOUP staff first assess a student’s needs, including food, housing, healthcare and employment, and then work to help the student meet those needs. RECOUP staff can help facilitate student planning and logistics for educational and future goals.
Who is eligible for participation in RECOUP?
Once accepted at Emerson College on the MCI-Norfolk campus, EPI students are eligible for participation in RECOUP upon their release from prison regardless of how many Emerson courses they have completed. Students are also eligible for RECOUP whether or not they have already graduated, or whether they plan to pursue employment or post-secondary education.
What are the benefits of RECOUP?
In order to prioritize food, housing, and employment security, RECOUP facilitates connections with local reentry support organizations to help formerly incarcerated students obtain wraparound services like public benefits, driver’s licenses, and MassHealth. Students determine which services they need or want, and they take the lead while RECOUP provides technical support and strategic planning assistance.
RECOUP also facilitates connections to other reentry services such as the Partakers Empowerment Program, a reentry partnership with Brandeis Educational Justice Initiative, which is intended to increase literacy in topics ranging from technology to civics, finance, and more. In addition to community partners, RECOUP also works closely with a variety of Emerson College offices to support students who may want to consider finishing their college degrees at Emerson’s Boston campus or take advantage of career and alumni services. Such offices include Admissions, the Division of Student Affairs, the Office of Financial Aid, the Office of Student Employment, the Career Development Center, and the Office of Alumni Affairs. These relationships connect RECOUP participants with Emerson College resources.