Directed By
Roger Weisberg
Matter of Fact Shorts

First Degree

The expression, sent up the river, was coined by convicts who were sent up the Hudson River to do their time at the infamous Sing Sing Prison in Ossining, NY. FIRST DEGREE finds hope in this seemingly hopeless place by investigating an unusual college behind bars that is preventing Sing Sing inmates from being sent back up the river after their release. FIRST DEGREE takes viewers inside this notorious maximum security prison and introduces them to a cast of unforgettable inmates. One is Jermaine Archer, whose reputation changed from being a feared gang leader to being a role model for students attending college at Sing Sing. Another is Sean Pica, who served 16 years for murder, but unlike most paroled inmates who reoffended and quickly returned to prison, Sean came back to run Sing Sing’s college program. Nationwide, over half of released inmates return to prison within 5 years, but for the past 14 years, less than 1% of the inmates that received a college degree at Sing Sing returned to prison.

In the Crime & Punishment program.

Wednesday, July 22 at 9:00PM in DeBoest Lecture Hall (IMA) Saturday, July 25 at 11:45AM in DeBoest Lecture Hall (IMA)