Restoring Our Communities...a program for formerly incarcerated students.

Restoring Our Communities

Program For Formerly Incarcerated Students


Restoring Our Communities (ROC) is an academic support program at Laney College, by and for formerly incarcerated students. ROC is about supporting and equipping formerly incarcerated* (FI)  students with the tools to be successful at Laney College and beyond.

We are dedicated to eliminating the stigma of being formerly incarcerated and reversing the effects of mass incarceration and the school-to-prison pipeline. Our goal is to support students from reentry to graduation and/or transfer.

We provide a safe space in a therapeutic learning community where FI students can feel a sense of validation and belonging. Our space provides opportunities for peer mentoring and peer advising. Peer mentoring is student-to-student guidance on things like what classes to take, who is a good professor, how to be a good student etc. Peer advising is ambassador and staff support on how to apply for transfer, how to use, what it is like being at a university etc. Both peer mentoring and peer advising provide social capital for FI students who usually are also first-generation students as well.

To be eligible for our program you must be:

  • A Laney College student+
  • Enrolled in at least 3 units
  • A student who was formerly incarcerated*

+Laney College is your home campus (the majority of units are at Laney College)

*Former incarceration can include simple arrest, juvenile or women’s detention, city and/or county jail, state and/or federal prison, or military, immigrant or psychiatric detention.


Academic Assistance

  • Informal Tutoring** (student and staff support)
  • Peer mentoring
  • Staff advising+
  • Academic Counseling
  • University Transfer Assistance and Support

Housing Referral

Clean Slate

Material Support

  • Direct Assistance and Matched Savings (Sparkpoint)
  • Weekly BART Tickets
  • Books and Supplies

**Dependent on office conditions and student or staff availability.

+Not counseling.

ROC pipelines formerly incarcerated students into living wage job industries through community partnerships and Laney College's Career Technical Education (CTE) programs. ROC works closely with Laney's CTE faculty and staff to provide workforce training support. Programs that have committed to work with formerly incarcerated students include:

Through our community partnerships, ROC provides pathways to employment opportunities for students who are enrolled in our CTE programs.

We provide a stigma-free space where you can study, learn and grow with other like-minded students. If you are formerly incarcerated and thinking about returning to school, please visit us in the E building, Room 203, so that we can assist you with the steps for enrolling in CCCApply (and creating your CCCID), FAFSA (and creating your FSAID) and Laney College.

*Former incarceration can include simple arrest with no conviction, juvenile and/or women’s detention, city and/or county jail, state and/or federal prison, military or immigrant detention.

+Academic and material support is based on the amount of resources the program has for the semester. Support is conditional and dependent on the student remaining in good standing with the program.

Supporting our students from CTE to PhD and everything in between!