Berkeley Underground Scholars
Liberation, Justice and Scholarship - Support the Underground Scholars

Berkeley Underground Scholars (BUS) creates pathways to a UC higher education for incarcerated and formerly incarcerated students. Through our three-pronged approach in recruitment, retention, and advocacy we are building a prison-to-school pipeline for the 5,000+ students in California state prisons who are enrolled in UC transferable community college courses. 

BUS has great success in helping incarcerated and formerly incarcerated students gain admission to UC. In 2020 the acceptance rate for the UC applicants we served was 65% compared to UC Berkeley’s overall transfer acceptance rate of under 25%. Our holistic approach to supporting and advising our students has proven successful. The BUS graduation rate is nearly 100% and most of our graduates continue their education by enrolling in Masters, Ph.D., and professional graduate programs, many in humanities fields.  

The criminalization and incarceration of low-income communities and communities of color have disproportionately pushed them out of school and legally barred them from many jobs and housing opportunities. We're reversing generations of discrimination and marginalization by providing access to higher education, helping students transform their lives, and working to change policies to create more just and equitable outcomes. 

Rank State Gifts
1 CA 7
2 AA 0
2 AE 0
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