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Shakespeare in Prison opens new ideas to women at Huron Valley Correctional Facility

YPSILANTI, Mich – Inside the Huron Valley Correctional facility, words that were first written in 1592 are on stage behind the walls and barbed wire and are breathing new ideas and life into the women there.

"Unfortunately I thought the world owed me something but I've learned different, I can do better now," Mikayla Hull said.

Hull may be an inmate, but she's also starring in the title role in Richard III.

The Shakespeare in Prison program is a privilege for inmates to participate in. Frannie Shepherd Bates and her team are at the prison weekly, introducing the women to words they may have never heard and themes which today still have relevance.

"It gives them hope that they can do something really incredible with their lives because of the sense of accomplishment they get from taking on this enormous challenge and realizing they're fabulous at it," Shepherd-Bates said.

For the majority of women who end up at Huron Valley, lack of self-esteem and repeatedly being told they are worthless is the root of their problems.

For Hull, who brought life to Richard III on the prison stage, she's just a few months from release.

She's got plans: college and a job in the insurance industry.

"It's helped me a lot," Hull said. "I've found some other things that I'm good at and I'm just more prepared to go out there."

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