Paul Marshall Lecture at #Baylor Sept. 19 | "Blasphemy and Other Threats to Freedom of Religion and Speech" https://t.co/8wHFGeeqDF
Incorporating Religion into the U.S. History Survey https://t.co/iu3cHdi0b4 @AndreaLTurpin @USReligionBlog
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How To Survive Graduate School https://t.co/YIQK9gjt47 Thomas Kidd @TGC
Becoming a More Sensible Evidentialist about Jesus - Stephen Wykstra lecture Aug. 22 https://t.co/Ofq9GfxUwK
Rescuing Syriac Manuscripts in Iraq - The ASOR Blog https://t.co/wHcMzptt7d
The Fence: Mainline Protestants and Immigration Sixty Years Ago https://t.co/QlBENynzYv @USReligionBlog @nickphistory
Crucible of Faith https://t.co/nk532jB1L6 Philip Jenkins on his new book @anxious_bench @BasicBooks
Paul Froese on Meaning and Purpose - ISR ReligionWatch https://t.co/HywQz3LQcg
Baylor Launches Center for Christian Philosophy | @Baylor University https://t.co/aRXOb93cuT via @baylorumedia

Assessing the Long-Term Effectiveness of Seminaries in Maximum Security Prisons

IN THE NEWS

Angola2Book released 8/6/2016
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10-9-2012
Impact of Seminaries for Maximum Security Prisoners Will Be Studied By Baylor University’s Institute for Studies of Religion

[ READ THE PRESS RELEASE ]

RESEARCH UPDATE:

Bible College Participation and Prison Misconduct: A Preliminary Analysis
by Grant Duwe, Michael Hallett, Joshua Hays, Sung Joon Jang &  Byron R Johnson, Journal of Offender Rehabilitation, May 12, 2015
The Resurgence of Religion in America’s Prisons
by Byron R. Johnson and Michael Hallett,  Religions 5(3), 663-683, August 2014

An In-Depth Study of the Louisiana State Penitentiary and Darrington Prison

The Darrington Unit resembles most other maximum security prisons around the country, except for the fact that it now offers a four-year seminary within the prison. On August 29, 2011, thirty-nine prisoners were formally installed as the first class of seminarians studying to become ministers under a new program that operates within the maximum security prison. The Darrington Bible College is an extension of the Ft. Worth-based Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and is modeled after the Angola Bible College, a seminary based at the Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola, Louisiana.  These two privately funded seminaries represent fascinating correctional experiments. The Baylor Institute for Studies of Religion has received funding to test the proposition that these seminaries can transform the lives of prisoners as well as the prison culture itself.  If found to be effective, the seminary model could be replicated in other prisons.

“Seminaries in maximum security prisons are designed to rehabilitate prisoners and transform the prison environment itself, we intend to test that proposition,” 

states Byron R. Johnson, Ph.D., director of Baylor’s ISR and Distinguished Professor of the Social Sciences and principal investigator of the project.

Sung Joon Jang, Ph.D., an associate professor of sociology at Baylor and an ISR faculty fellow is the co-principal investigator on the study.
Jang states that social science research:

is helping us understand that religious conversions can play an important role as a starting point in the process of long-term change and reform. Offenders who successfully straighten out their lives often experience a turning point or event that was pivotal in bringing them out of a criminal lifestyle. In short, research suggests offenders can and do change.”

The grant is funded by Premier FOTO, LLC, a subsidiary of Premier Designs, Inc. (founded by Andy and Joan Horner) and will be used to conduct five-year studies of the four-year seminary dubbed “the Darrington Bible College” (an extension of the Fort Worth-based Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary) housed at the Darrington Unit in Rosharon, Texas; and a nondenominational program called Angola Bible College at Louisiana State Penitentiary, commonly called Angola