FORSYTH, Ga. –The Georgia Department of Corrections and the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary (NOBTS) Leavell College Extension Center at Whitworth Women’s Facility (WWF) held an open house on Wednesday, April 10 in Hartwell, Georgia. The New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, Leavell College Extension Center at WWF offers offenders a two-year, 76 semester hour Associate’s degree in Christian Ministry and will be expanding to a four-year, 126 semester hour Bachelor of Arts degree in Christian Ministry
“These partnerships offer offenders an opportunity to gain new skills and tools that will assist them with making positive changes in their lives,” said commissioner Timothy C. Ward of the Georgia Department of Corrections. “By working together for a common purpose, we allow offenders an opportunity to enter their communities as positive leaders.”
At the ceremony, words of encouragement were provided by Board of Corrections Chairman, Alton Russell and former Governor Nathan Deal. Funding for the program is provided by the Heartbound Ministries. These fully accredited college degrees are designed to provide a broad foundation for ministry within the prison system and are based upon eight core competencies: Biblical Exposition, Christian Heritage, Servant Leadership, Interpersonal Relationships, Spiritual and Character Formation, Disciple Making, Worship Leadership and Life Skills.
In April 2007, NOBTS began offering classes at Phillips State Prison and has seen 56 graduates since its inception. In addition to earning a degree, the offenders minister within the Georgia prison system under the direction of a Chaplain and return to their communities as prepared leaders ready to evangelize and disciple their peers in the Christian faith and to minister to their peer’s spiritual and temporal needs.
For more information on the NOBTS Program please visit http://www.nobts.edu/leavellcollege/
About the Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC)
The Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) has one of the largest prison systems in the U.S. and is responsible for supervising nearly 52,000 state prisoners. It is the largest law enforcement agency in the state with approximately 10,500 employees. For more information on the GDC, call 478-992-5247 or visit http://www.gdc.ga.gov.