People’s Collective University (Universidad Colectiva de la Gente) is a community learning center, run by the community and for the community, aimed at redefining what education means for communities, in terms of formation, application, and relevance to everyday life. Where the current system is focused on informing, we are focused on transforming. We hold the principles of critical consciousness and dialogue, as laid out by Paolo Freire, as cornerstones of our work, and we strive to create safe spaces that foster the development of both. We acknowledge the work of education to be political, and we assume as our political stance that human beings are fundamentally valuable, intelligent, and capable regardless of race,class, gender, or religion. In this political work we do not measure progress through meaningless exams, but rather by the level of love, empowerment, and creativity developed and expressed both by individual participants and by the community as a whole. These measurements and goals are as much based on our views of humane ways of being as they are by pragmatic thinking: we believe that a student who has learned to see their value, who has been pushed to question, who has come to see their experience in relation to the experience of others, will be able to more adequately analyze and push against systems of oppression than a student who has been trained to memorize, pass exams and please teachers.