UCI provides an opportunity for offender participants to attend the Makin’ It Work class. Makin’ It Work focuses on soft skills and cognitive behavior. Staff attend a 3-day instructor class taught by Dr. S. Parese. Currently, UCI has 12 certified Makin’ It Work instructors.

The Makin’ It Work class consists of 10 class sessions, two hours each, and a graduation ceremony. Some of the topic discussions are based around the following categories: Recognizing High Risk Situations, Knowing Your Triggers, Stop and Think, Actions and Consequences, Working Together, and Problem Solving. These discussions are guided from a student workbook with stories relatable to a work environment. For graduation, the speakers usually consist of the certified instructors, UCI Administration staff, and two offender speakers. Upon release, offender participants are given their Makin’ It Work booklet they completed in class.

The class was originally created to target the releasing offender’s population; however, we have found that including those without a release date has also had a positive influence and impact. The feedback received from participating offenders, with or without a release date, has been extremely positive and beneficial. They have indicated that they use these skills not only at work, but in their housing areas as well. These are the transferable soft skills that we all use on an everyday basis.

By hiring a UCI worker after his/her release from prison, employers can qualify for the Federal Work Opportunity Tax Credit of up to $2,400 for each formerly incarcerated person. In addition, employers may also benefit from a Federal Bonding Program where they receive six months of coverage at no cost to protect against employee theft or dishonesty ranging from $5,000 to $25,000 for employers hiring “at-risk, hard-to-place job seekers.”

Hiring an offender who has been released from prison, reduces recidivism, supports businesses and economy, and helps keep communities safer.


Please fill out information below if you are interested in hiring an offender. Someone from our re-entry team will contact you.