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May 30, 2009 2:06 AM

Mike Tharp: No shortcuts at Atwater Penitentiary

ATWATER -- Three other Mercedians graduated this week. Theirs was a different and separate graduation. Sure, they wore blue gowns and caps and switched their tassels from left to right, on signal. But they did it inside a federal prison. And they did it with only the warden, a handful of prison officials and a few of their inmate buddies sitting in the audience.

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