How Education Gave This Former Prisoner a Second Chance | Gateways


– So this one, this is done from jail. This is actually from jail. The cover’s designed in jail,
the photo’s taken in jail, it was actually a cassette tape. – [Girl] Like a cassette tape? – A cassette tape, cause I’m old. And then I remember they let my mom bring it to the visiting center
and I had dumped them all on the table and I just took a picture like holding all these tapes. And I was super stoked about it. – [Woman] This is my friend Terrence. I met him while I was taking Gateways for Incarcerated
Youth, which is a college class that allows students
and incarcerated youth to learn alongside each other
at the Green Hill School, a juvenile detention
facility in Washington State. Terrence took Gateways about 20 years ago, one of the first years
that it was offered. Since then, Terrence has
been released from prison and successfully stayed out,
and continues to contribute to the Gateways community
by speaking on panels about incarceration,
which is where I met him. _ I’m Terrence Turner,
and I’m born and raised in the city of Destiny which is behind me, it’s the city of Tacoma. These are my stomping grounds,
a lot of great memories and a lot of bad memories
happened out here but this is smog city, the
Tacoma Aroma, this is it. I grew up in a single parent
situation, and basically it led to some interesting
trials and tribulations out here. At the age of 13 I was shot. I wasn’t actually in a
gang when I got shot, but immediately after that
I basically got in gangs, and eventually led to
me being incarcerated and it wasn’t just a small
sentence it was a big deal, like I was looking at 20 to
life in the adult system, and I lucked out, ended up getting what they call juvenile life. And that was a six year sentence for me. I went in 15 years old, I weighed like a buck
15 and I was like 5’3″. I remember I did the first four years of the six year sentence, I did what I like to call hard time, because I was constantly
going to the hole, constantly on 23 and 1, constantly getting in trouble basically. And I remember I called
my mom, and I said, “Mom, the system did it again, “you know they’re trippin’ mom” they put me on visit
restriction, and I remember very blatantly she said over the phone, she goes, “you did this, Terrance. “The system didn’t do this.
You gave them the tools, “you gave them the ammo
to use it against you “and to hurt your family.” By acting out, by
lashing out, they’ve won, and when I realized
that the smarter I get, the less they control me. My rehabilitation came
from that standpoint. About a year later, they introduced me to the Gateways program. The very end of the semester
they asked everybody do you have any art? Pictures, drawings, poems, writings, anything that you want to
share with the free world? This is your chance to get your voice heard
outside of these gates. And I was like, “Well, I
got this piece that I wrote “when I was on 72 hours in
the hole about you know, “f the system basically.” I was very angry, I wrote this piece called “Incarceration is
Death, Can you Survive?” One of the ladies from the class prior that I had handed that paper
too, she came back to me and she said “Terrence, do you
have any idea what you wrote? “I don’t think you understand how powerful “and important this is that you wrote. “So I’ve already talked to
the director of Gateways “and she’s agreed to let me
work with you just by yourself “for the entire semester to do “what we’re gonna call
polishing this piece. “Then we’re gonna take this piece, “and we’re gonna press it up,
we’re gonna make it a book, “and we’re gonna sell the book, and then “we’re gonna give you the money
that we sell the book for.” In 2000 I was released,
on my 21st birthday after serving the full six year sentence, and I’m happy to say I’ve
been free ever since. I’m pretty sure that if I didn’t
give that program a chance, you guys wouldn’t be filming this today. I’d be dead for sure, or reincarcerated, for sure, that’s like without a doubt. – [Woman] Terrence has
won countless awards and received accolades
for his spoken word, and poetry, and music. He continues to use his platform to speak about injustices
in the prison system, and has not only spoken to the
Gateways class at Ever Green, but colleges, schools, and even prisons, all over the country. – A lot of people talk about
intervention, you know, but nobody talks about prevention. You know, rather than try to
catch something after the fact, why don’t we just stop it from happening? And I think the way to do
that is to just literally provide for more outlets for creativity and for opportunities
for these young kids. A lot of kids just need
somebody to believe in them, and I think that that was
the problem with myself, is I didn’t have anything to believe in. But at the end of the
day, kid is still a kid, and they don’t need to be jailed. They need to be educated,
they need to be loved, they need to be protected, they need to be given opportunities, and they need to be given second chances. When I first tried to start my business, my recording studio, I wanted
to start a recording studio for at risk youth right here
in Tacoma where I’m from. I addressed the Tacoma City board, I had all my ducks in a row,
and it was a definite need, I wanted to create a
recording studio for free, nonprofit organization
that allows any kid, any place could come in
there and learn these tools, could learn the software,
learn the equipment, learn it and become
engineers, become producers, become writers, become
whatever they wanted to be– we wanted to give them
that, and that small space, and they turned me down. They said no Terrence, great
idea, not gonna happen. And then I remember I said,
“well, f it, I’m just gonna “do it on my own. “I don’t need them, I don’t need the city, “I don’t need any of this stuff,” and so I did it right out of my own home. And it blossomed, and it blew up into… the biggest success that I could ever say besides staying free, is
one of my biggest successes was starting that business on my own, with the adversity of the city. I probably was 10 times more successful than I would have been had
the city worked with me, so don’t get discouraged,
because you know for every loss there’s gonna be great
successes behind that loss, so sometimes we have to take
a couple steps back to regroup and shoot forward again,
with even more vigor and even more inspiration
and even more perseverance. Because no matter what,
there’s still gonna be a way to get to that goal you just
gotta find the right way. I’m a lot further than I
would say all the people that I grew up with because
they stayed in their backyard, they never got displaced, they
never had to make changes, they never had to take risks, they never had to travel
the world or try to see it, you know if I could give anybody advice, give people second chances
if you ever want one. And to know that there are
a lot of people out here in the world that actually
care, so don’t give up.

42 thoughts on “How Education Gave This Former Prisoner a Second Chance | Gateways

  • October 17, 2017 at 8:51 pm
    Permalink

    Simply amazing

    Reply
  • October 17, 2017 at 10:40 pm
    Permalink

    Thank you Terrance and Soul Pancake! what a great series,very eye opening and touching !

    Reply
  • October 18, 2017 at 6:11 pm
    Permalink

    A truly amazing series! Something different, I really enjoyed it

    Reply
  • October 20, 2017 at 12:30 pm
    Permalink

    Very well-put and eye-opening.

    Reply
  • October 29, 2017 at 11:49 pm
    Permalink

    Congratulations Terrance on all your amazing accomplishments. You are a force that drives change. Keep speaking out and making your dreams come true. Young people need you.

    Reply
  • October 31, 2017 at 4:28 pm
    Permalink

    why is this unlisted?

    Reply
  • November 1, 2017 at 10:37 pm
    Permalink

    Thank you for this

    Reply
  • November 7, 2017 at 3:42 pm
    Permalink

    i actually forgot about this, but he and other people came to my school years ago and it was so impactful hearing their story

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 3:30 pm
    Permalink

    Am can i have a like because i want one.

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 3:43 pm
    Permalink

    Love the fact that its true

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 3:45 pm
    Permalink

    3rd re-upload?

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 4:15 pm
    Permalink

    Get uncomfortable thats where success and thriving begins

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 4:22 pm
    Permalink

    Maybe don't do anything illegal?????

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 4:27 pm
    Permalink

    Many countries (not the US) consider education being more efficient than incarceration. In Iceland the government wanted to get rid of juvenile alcoholism so they provided kid to with more gym and classes and not with more laws and restriction. Slovenia has one of the best school system in Europe.

    Thanks to their education those two countries have the lowest crime rates in Europe (with Norway).

    Education rocks, thank you SoulPancake and Terrance Turner!

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 4:31 pm
    Permalink

    More power to you Terrance. More power to you…

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 4:39 pm
    Permalink

    Best video you guys have done. I’m very passionate about this. I was incarcerated most of my teenage life and to have had something like this would have been amazing.

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 5:29 pm
    Permalink

    Achingly hopeful.

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 6:26 pm
    Permalink

    Eagerly waiting for your Phillip video

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 6:54 pm
    Permalink

    How inspirational. ❤

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 7:12 pm
    Permalink

    Amazing series ♥️

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 7:34 pm
    Permalink

    Tacoma home sweet home

    Reply
  • November 14, 2017 at 9:22 pm
    Permalink

    His art is already pretty soulful. Where can I get a copy of his book ?

    Reply
  • November 15, 2017 at 6:47 am
    Permalink

    Proud to have watched this piece

    Reply
  • November 16, 2017 at 1:48 pm
    Permalink

    Beautiful!

    Reply
  • November 16, 2017 at 9:13 pm
    Permalink

    What a great speaker and leader. This guy is definitely going places

    Reply
  • November 27, 2017 at 4:43 pm
    Permalink

    This is the importance of not only incarcerate people, but giving them the chance to turn their lives around. Everybody deserves a second chance.

    Reply
  • November 28, 2017 at 7:37 pm
    Permalink

    Life is like an arrow, you get pulled back further and further, until one time, the hand frees the arrow, it then will fly into greater wonders and happiness

    No matter what life does to you, it's in your power to decide what your next choice will be

    Reply
  • December 19, 2017 at 8:57 pm
    Permalink

    This is very interesting. I am a new subscriber. I received my degree I. criminal justice because I have a passion for juvenile justice! I pray one day I working with the juvenile justice system one day! 🙏🏾🙏🏾 education is very important to the rehabilitation of youths because it reduces the recidivism rate. In instead of just sent youths to prison or jail for punishment sake, education programs should be offer in prisons and juvenile detention centers. So when prisoners come out of jail they can be equipped with skills that can assist them to stay out of prison. However I do believe children do not need to be jailed, they need education! Education is their second chance!

    Reply
  • December 25, 2017 at 3:23 pm
    Permalink

    “A kid is still a kid. Kids don’t need to be jailed, they need to be educated, loved, & protected..” 🙌🏾

    Reply
  • December 29, 2017 at 8:37 am
    Permalink

    Maaan I Love all these videos!❤👌

    Reply
  • January 4, 2018 at 8:43 am
    Permalink

    Love you Terrence. Keep being such a wonderful inspiration. Our truth speaks to our youth!

    Reply
  • January 5, 2018 at 7:54 pm
    Permalink

    Ay terrace save some pussy for us

    Reply
  • February 5, 2018 at 3:40 am
    Permalink

    a very beautiful growth. amazing to watch these kind of things <3

    Reply
  • March 1, 2018 at 10:36 pm
    Permalink

    I fw this channel

    Reply
  • April 4, 2018 at 5:14 am
    Permalink

    is there a way to get in touch with him for spoken word collabs?

    Reply
  • June 11, 2018 at 10:45 pm
    Permalink

    I can see my work in the port of Tacoma! LOL

    Reply
  • July 7, 2018 at 1:30 pm
    Permalink

    He’s my favorite of this show

    Reply
  • July 16, 2018 at 9:53 pm
    Permalink

    God BLESS you Terrance! Thank you soul pancake. My son is 3 1/2 into his 5 yrs at Green Hill. These are the real life story's that the incarcerated kids NEED to see. More positive less negative in their very basic lives.

    Reply
  • August 18, 2018 at 9:33 am
    Permalink

    " Prevention not intervention "
    (☞゚ヮ゚)☞ ☜(゚ヮ゚☜)

    Reply
  • August 27, 2018 at 4:07 pm
    Permalink

    253 ✊🏾I’d like to volunteer with this guy!! What was this studio …I never heard of it 🤷🏽‍♀️

    Reply
  • October 27, 2018 at 5:44 pm
    Permalink

    He a Criminal

    Reply
  • November 19, 2018 at 7:53 pm
    Permalink

    Might as well teach them in prison. The public school system is sure as hell not doing it.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *