On April 25, join us for an exploration of the challenges, joys, and lessons of teaching and practicing writing in the justice system. Educators, teaching artists, and program directors of academic and creative prison writing programs will be joined by writers who experienced these programs while inside. The evening will open with a reading of the work of currently or formerly incarcerated writers from represented programs.
Caits Meissner is PEN America’s Prison and Justice Writing Program director. Before joining PEN America, Meissner was an integral team member in developing community arts and education programs for organizations such as Tribeca Film Institute, The Bronx Academy of Letters, Urban Arts Partnership, The Facing History School, and The Lower Eastside Girls Club. She has taught, consulted, and co-created extensively for over 15 years across a wide spectrum of communities
with a focus on prisons, public schools, and college classrooms at The New School University, John Jay College of Criminal Justice and The City College of New York. From 2012–2014, Meissner served over 500
women worldwide in an original intensive online writing course that
matured into live programming, including a reading series, courses for
incarcerated youth and adult women, and state-sponsored cultural
exchange in Malaysia. In 2017, Meissner reenvisioned the concept of
book tour for her illustrated poetry collection Let It Die Hungry (The
Operating System, 2016), pairing public speaking engagements with
opportunities to work with incarcerated writers across the United
States.Meissner holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the City College of New York, where she was awarded The Jerome Lowell DeJur Prize in Creative Writing, an Educational Enrichment Award, and The
Davon Clark has over 21 years of experience and training in the educational and entertainment field; he received two NAACP Image Awards for his work on TV One’s critically acclaimed docu-series UnSung, was honored with Camden County’s Martin Luther King Jr. Freedom Medal, was a recipient of Wawa Foundation & Read by 4th Reading Hero Award, and recognized as Black Enterprises’s 2018 100 Be Modern Man. He has worked as an educational instructor in Philadelphia, PA, Bronx, NY, Los Angeles, CA and Camden, NJ teaching K-8 graders. In 2015, Davon started his company ADC Kid, which focuses on combating educational inequalities and injustices around literacy and media. He makes this possible through author of color programs in schools, media content, and conducting interactive literacy and writing programs with incarcerated youth which aim to showcase diversity. Davon holds a bachelor’s degree in Communications and Theater from Temple University, coupled with his international studies in London, England at Northampton University.
Additional speakers coming soon.
Date & Time
April 25, 2019
6:00 pm-7:30 pm
Executive Meeting Room, Campus Center
326 Penn St.