Unusual new program seeks to cut urban crime by pushing gang members into college

January 30, 2019

When Matt Jackson’s girlfriend was killed in gang crossfire in 2014, leaving him a single father to a 3-year-old girl, he knew it was time to do something different with his life.

Jackson,* who grew up surrounded by drugs and violence in Boston’s South End neighborhood, had been getting into trouble since he was a kid. Locked up at 14 for possessing crack cocaine, he spent what might have been his college years in prison for selling the drug. At the time of the shooting, he was 31, bouncing between jobs and dealing on the side.

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