Kaitlyn Thomas with the book donation to the Women's Prison Project
Kaitlyn Thomas with the book donation to the Women’s Prison Project

In celebration of literacy and supporting women’s issues, SUNY Broome’s Women’s Discussion Group, a student group focusing on women’s issues, donated 154 books to the Women’s Prison Book Project on Oct. 18, 2019. This project was a collaboration with the campus’ two-year international honor society, Phi Theta Kappa.

Faculty Adviser, Professor I.J. Byrnes of the Philosophy Program, noted that the project was inspired by reading Orange is the New Black by Piper Kerman, a nonfiction memoir by the author who spent a year in prison on drug charges.

WDG members and Faculty Adviser Professor I.J. Byrnes decided to support this literary and rehabilitative project in light of the skyrocketing increase of the number of women behind bars since the 1980s, the problems faced by the children of single women in jail and the correlation of imprisonment and mental health and addiction issues among women inmates.

“Everyone deserves to read a good book,” said club Vice President Kaitlyn Thomas.

The SUNY Broome Women’s Discussion Group and Phi Theta Kapa would like to acknowledge and thank the book donors involved in this project:

  • Professor I.J. Byrnes
  • Kaitlyn Thomas
  • Deena Price
  • Club President Emeritus Orion Barber
  • SUNY Broome alumna Sierra Stephens

The SUNY Broome Women’s Discussion Group would also like to thank the following campus and community members for their help and support with this project:

  • Sandy Springstead
  • Cheryl Sullivan
  • Work Study Grace Loop
  • Dean and Associate VP Michael Kinney
  • Ryan Dempsey
  • David Capodaglia