HOLLAND — Representatives from the Michigan Division of Corrections visited Holland on Thursday, Jan. 12, assembly with leaders from Hope School and Western Theological Seminary to debate increased schooling in prisons.
Extra:Jail schooling program from Hope, Western Theological Seminary will get official approval
Hope School, WTS and MDOC accomplice to run the Hope-Western Jail Training Program, which operates out of the Muskegon Correctional Facility. This system began as a pilot in 2019 and has grown into a completely accredited program.
Kyle Kaminski, administrator for Offender Success Administration at MDOC, mentioned the division is happy in regards to the progress of HWPEP.
“We’re actually enthusiastic about our partnership,” Kaminski, who oversees schooling for MDOC statewide, mentioned. “This system is basically withdrawing. It’s persevering with to get stronger and stronger.”
There are presently 23 college students in this system at MCF. The aim is to develop to round 80 college students in 4 cohorts. The primary individuals may full their levels as quickly as Could 2025. This system is directed by Hope professor Richard Ray and WTS professor David Stubbs.
Programs are taught by Hope and WTS professors on the correctional facility. There are 5 lessons provided this semester, with plans to develop to 12 or 13 lessons per semester within the coming years.
The partnership is one in every of a number of for MDOC, together with a Calvin College Program in Ionia, a Siena Heights Program in Jackson and partnerships with Mott Neighborhood School, Jackson School and Delta Neighborhood School.
“Now we have faculty packages in virtually half of our services proper now,” Kaminski mentioned. “We wish to be proper on the forefront nationally in terms of postsecondary entry for prisoners.”
Kaminski mentioned packages like HWPEP assist people discover success upon reentering society, and create a greater group in prisons.
“The scholars who’re engaged on this program are placing their vitality into this program,” he mentioned. “It’s having an impression on the ability the place they stay. Their optimistic engagement on this program reduces a number of the unfavourable issues that may occur in jail.”
Matt Scogin and Felix Theonugraha, presidents of Hope School and WTS, respectively, say the partnership not solely matches their missions of offering increased schooling, however their mission as Christian organizations.
“For us, it comes down to 2 easy however highly effective issues,” Scogin mentioned. “One is, we imagine within the transformational energy of an schooling.
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“The second factor is, that is deeply linked to our Christian mission. It’s not simply a possibility to develop entry to schooling, it’s a possibility to bear out our Christian mission.”
“As Christians who’ve been forgiven a lot, we’re referred to as to like a lot,” Theonugraha mentioned. “To have the ability to prolong that grace and share the hope that we have now in Christ via a gaggle of individuals, incarcerated college students, that society typically forgets or marginalizes, to us seems like the suitable factor to do.”
Study extra at hope.edu/hwpep.
— Contact reporter Mitchell Boatman at email@example.com. Comply with him on Twitter @SentinelMitch.