Adventures of An Aspiring Librarian

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Recently I had the opportunity to visit a prison library with the UNC Special Libraries Student Association.

After classes, we adventurers carpooled to the Polk Correctional Institute in Butner, North Carolina. Polk Correctional Institute is a state-run prison that houses over 900 male inmates. While the prison generally houses your typical criminal offenders, it also has a high security maximum control unit intended for the state’s most violent offenders.

The inmates at Polk (aside from those in maximum security) typically have a daily schedule that includes meals, classes, recreational activities and other routines. They can even go to the prison library at a certain time and check out books and other materials!

Once we arrived at the prison, we were escorted in past the barbed wire and through security. We couldn’t bring in any items except for our IDs. Once signing in and moving past security, the librarian met us…

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