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Incarceration

Second chances: An ex-convict’s path to higher education

On an early October morning in 1990, Ralph Spinelli swung open the back door of a large restaurant as he shoved his other hand into the pocket of his lightweight windbreaker, pretending to hold a gun. He had eaten at the restaurant several times before and knew that the door was unlocked around that time for deliveries — it was his habit to notice the weaknesses of an establishment. The three workers in the restaurant stared at Spinelli in bewilderment…

Reggie Bailey’s Barbershop

“My last trip in the penitentiary, I had to make a decision on what I wanted to do with my life,” said Reggie Bailey, sitting in the swiveling barber chair in his small shop in the heart of downtown Oakland. “I just decided to go to barber college.”

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