Sekwan Merritt, 30, is pictured during a politics class at Maryland Correctional Institution. Photo: Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post via Getty Images. Featured Image
While the government bans incarcerated people from receiving federal financial assistance, the Second Chance Pell Experiment, which the DOE launched in 2015, allows people detained in the 26 participating states to apply for Pell grants, which are financial awards for undergraduate students experiencing financial hardship. They are funded by the government and generally do not have to be repaid.