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  • (melodic piano music)

  • - [Wall Street] We gonna go ahead and get situated.

  • This is the finance program, and we always like to see new faces.

  • - [Rahsaan] When you come to Wall Street's

  • financial literacy class, you're gonna see people

  • with tattoos and dreds, and just people you

  • normally wouldn't expect to see learning finance.

  • You're gonna see people with all different backgrounds

  • looking for hope.

  • He makes it universal.

  • (melodic piano music)

  • - If I tell you I'll give you the 50 bucks,

  • but I want you to pay me back $50 in interest,

  • what you gonna say?

  • - I'm gonna say "no." - You gonna say what?

  • - No. - And why you gonna say no?

  • - They call me Wall Street because I teach

  • all of the financial classes here at San Quentin.

  • I've been teaching financial education for about 10 years now.

  • I am in prison for participating in a robbery-murder,

  • and I was sentenced to 54 years to life in prison for that crime,

  • and I've been incarcerated now for 22 years.

  • These are the stocks that I picked,

  • MasterCard, I got at 89, they're at 200.

  • - Wall Street came to prison illiterate.

  • He doesn't have a college education to these day;

  • he only has a GED, and yet, this guy is successfully

  • trading from prison.

  • - Marcelli, who had come from juvenile hall with me,

  • he would read the sports page to me, he'd be like,

  • man, go get it; and I'll read it, and I grabbed the paper,

  • and I was like, I got it.

  • When I turned around, an older guy said, "Hey, man

  • "you play the stock market?"

  • And I realized that I picked up the business section

  • instead of the sports page.

  • I was like, ah, man, and I asked him

  • what the stock market was, and he told me, he said,

  • that's the place where white folks keep all their money.

  • And that's when I really first discovered the stock market.

  • So, I started teaching myself how to read.

  • Family or friends on the outside opened up

  • online brokerage accounts, and I basically told them

  • what to buy and when to buy and when to sell.

  • And it was just simply, it was really just that easy.

  • This is the finance program,

  • but I don't teach about finance.

  • I teach financial empowerment emotional literacy.

  • That's what I teach.

  • So, I think financial education is important

  • for incarcerated people, given that the crimes

  • that are committed are financially motivated and driven.

  • When I learned about financial education myself,

  • I thought that would be something that other men

  • in my same situation could benefit from.

  • And so now the program teaches incarcerated men

  • how to better manage their emotions and relations

  • to their financial standing.

  • So, you gotta weigh your strategies

  • when you're talking about giving yourself room

  • to start saving money.

  • - When you're traumatized you do a lot of things

  • you don't know why you're doing them.

  • And that happens with finance, too.

  • I suffered a lot of trauma in my life,

  • and my trauma culminated in me murdering a man.

  • So, while this is very important to me because I do need

  • to manage my money and manage my life,

  • what's most important is that I'm managing

  • my emotional responsibilities, because the last time

  • I didn't do that, a man lost his life.

  • - I don't think you can have full rehabilitation

  • without financial education.

  • I can make amends for the crimes that I've done,

  • I can even stop doing the things that I've done,

  • but I think for people who were criminals,

  • when you empower those people, and they know

  • that they don't have to commit a crime like I did,

  • when I learned I didn't have to commit crime,

  • it was like, wow, I can really make something of my life

  • and not have to be a criminal.

  • (melodic piano music)

(melodic piano music)

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A2 US GreatBigStory financial finance wall street melodic education

The Inmate Teaching Finance Behind Bars

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    Samuel posted on 2018/07/04
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