Behind Bars

Is prison a place for punishment, retribution or rehabilitation? Over 150 Sociology, Criminology, Law and Public Services students considered this at ‘Behind Bars’, an in-house conference run by True Life Conferences. The day featured students hearing from a range of reformed prisoners who shared their eye-opening experiences surrounding a variety of crimes and the realities of prison life. The interactive lectures and more in-depth Q&A sessions brought topics alive for students and provided them with real life experiences that they will be able to apply to their learning. The honesty of the speakers and the intimacy of their stories moved the students and provided them with an experience that they will never forget.

Katie Otu, previously at Eggars, currently studying Sociology and Criminology:

“I found it insightful to be able to hear what prison life is really like from first-hand experience. Seeing how ex-offenders have gone through the process of rehabilitation combats the stereotypical thoughts that some people may have of an offender coming out of prison. The speakers were extremely brave to get up and tell their life stories to a room full of strangers. The day really made me think and empathise.”

Georgia Hughes, previously at Churchers, currently studying Sociology:

“I really enjoyed the day. It was so interesting to hear a real life story of what prison is like and the experiences compared to the image of prison we have in our heads.”

Alisha Metcalfe, previously at Woolmer Hill, currently studying Sociology and Public Services:

“I really enjoyed the day overall and learning about each person through the intimacy of their stories. I would have loved to spend more time asking them questions. Overall, the experience was very inspiring and helpful for understanding case studies for crime and deviance.”

Amy Marshall, previously at Weydon, currently studying Sociology:

“I loved the interaction and pace of all of the talks, they were really interesting and I was engaged throughout. I want to have the day all over again!”