Registration Now Open

Now accepting registrations on a first come first serve basis to participate in the Liberated Intellects program.

Register now

Liberated Intellects (LI) aims to benefit formerly incarcerated individuals by reducing recidivism through increasing educational access and improving their work prospects. LI has mentors with both lived experience and experience educating within prisons and universities to accomplish these aims.

Program Details

Get FREE help applying to college with other formerly incarcerated ​students.

The Liberated Intellects (LI) program prepares formerly incarcerated individuals to navigate the college application process. The program is available for free and is intended to serve the community in the most accessible way possible. Participants will meet weekly to enjoy a meal together and then participate in a workshop inspired by the program leader’s own transformative experiences in college as a previously incarcerated student.

We will help you:

  • Find the right college for you and your goals
  • Fill out your college application
  • Understand and fill out your financial aid forms
  • Write resumes and personal statements
  • Develop your professional communication skills, general computer/email/internet skills, and writing skills
  • Talk about your former incarceration on college applications and interviews

Liberated Intellects aims to benefit students by reducing recidivism, increasing educational access, improving workplace prospects, and maturely knowing how to best divulge their past while highlighting their future.

By providing education after incarceration, LI aspires to ameliorate adverse experiences, improve opportunities for well-paying jobs, reduce recidivism, and pave the path to future college degrees.

The Liberated Intellects program will meet starting in Spring 2023 (dates and times TBD). Each meeting will include a presentation from a guest speaker, community building time, and a workshop to practice skills related to the presentation. The meetings will be held at the UW South Madison Partnership (2238 South Park Street, Madison, WI 53713). To improve rapport, address questions, and help with essays, students will be invited to optional study halls at Union South (1308 W Dayton St, Madison, WI 53715).

We are recruiting for Spring 2023 on a first come first serve basis, register now!


  • Formerly incarcerated individual
  • Intent or interest to apply to college 
  • Live in the Madison area or within close commuting distance
  • Available for all meetings (dates and times TBD)

Register Now for Spring 2023

“As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn’t leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I’d still be in prison.”

– Nelson Mandela

Program Supporters


The Liberated Intellects program received the Wisconsin Idea Fellowship in Social Entrepreneurship award from American Family. The program is further supported by the Cyrena Pondrom Leadership Trust.