Marilyn Ortega, M.A.


Education: Bachelor of Arts in American ethnic studies and gender, women, and sexuality studies (December 2013)

Master of Arts in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at the University of Kansas

Currently pursuing a Doctor of Philosophy in American studies at the University of Kansas

McNair Project: Waging War on Our Children: Compulsory Education and the Prison Industrial Complex (2012)

Mentor: Shireen Roshanravan, Ph.D.

The United States of America is in an era of mass incarceration and at-risk youth find themselves being siphoned into a pipeline leading from their cradles to jail and prison cells. Along this pipeline, at-risk youth pass through the School-to-Prison Pipeline. The School-to-Prison Pipeline is the collusion between the Prison Industrial Complex and the current compulsory education system where existing criminal policy is superimposed on already faulty school policy. Through textual analysis and auto-ethnography I explore how social factors such as race and class converge to create the pipeline. I conclude by initiating a discussion on ways to dismantle the pipeline at a grass-roots level.