School for Correctional Ministries
The School for Correctional Ministries (SCM) exists to equip professionals and volunteers who serve in jails, prisons, and reentry for effective ministry through the church. Our vision is that equipped professionals and volunteers will effectively fulfill the Great Commission through service in correctional ministries. Our mission is to facilitate the development of academically grounded, spiritually whole, and practically skills ministers of the Gospel who are prepared to build up the Church in a changing world. Our hope and goal is that are students will become wise and compassionate servants of Christ.
A credential indicates students have met competencies established by the issuing agency. Completion of the credential program signals to all concerned that the individual has completed a set course of study that prepares them for ministry within a correctional setting (in-prison, reentry, or other correctional ministry setting). Students who complete the credential program will receive a certificate from the Institute for Prison Ministries indicating the completion of the credential program. This is a non-degree program. The certificate does not guarantee employment nor entrance in a correctional institution. It is up to each institution or agency to determine hiring and entrance criteria. The certificate does demonstrate the specific correctional ministry preparedness of the individual seeking employment or entrance.
All credential courses are accredited through Wheaton College, which is fully accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools as well as by several other accrediting agencies (see college website for complete information www.wheaton.edu ) Accreditation means that all courses taken at Wheaton College meet the standards set forth by the accrediting agency.
The SCM Credential Program is purposefully and intentionally structured to accommodate for working students to complete the program in a year of part-time study. The bulk of the program is online coursework, bookended at the beginning and the end by summer residential courses.
The School for Correctional Ministries is organized into three focus areas:
Correctional Chaplaincy Reentry Leadership Correctional Ministry
All Students will take 3 core courses followed by focus area required courses. The first core course is offered as a 5-day residential class in June on the campus of Wheaton College. The following 5 courses are offered online through the Summer,Fall and Spring sessions. The program concludes with a final 5-day residential course on the campus of Wheaton Collge in June.
Length of Program
The program can be completed in one year of part-time study or you may choose to complete the program in two years. If you are only interested in taking certain courses that would be helpful to augment your ministry, we would be happy to talk with you about your goals.
1 Year Program:(downloadable schedule) This program begins with a week-long summer residential course at Wheaton College. Following this class, students will take one online course during each Quad of the Fall and Spring semesters. Students will return to Wheaton the following summer for one last residential class.
2 Year Program: (downloadable schedule) The two year program follows the same basic pattern. However, in between the first and second year, there are no summer classes. Also, students will take only one course per semester, not Quad.
Wheaton College follows a semester academic calendar. A semester class lasts for 16 weeks. Most of our classes meet for half of the semester (8 weeks; known as a “quad”). Courses that meet for the first half of the semester are known as “A Quad” classes. Courses that meet for the second half of the semester are referred to as “B Quad” classes.
HOW TO APPLY
Application Process and Deadlines
To begin the Application Process, click here.
Students applying for SCM must submit their applications by April 15 for the Summer session, July 1 for the Fall Semester, and December 1 for the Spring Semester.
Need help obtaining your transcript to apply? Here are some helpful tips.
High School: Contact theHigh School directly. If the high school that you attended is no longer open, it can be a bit more challenging to obtain your high school transcript; however, Boards of Education are required to retain these records. You can contact the Board of Education in the jurisdiction of the school for information on obtaining your transcripts.
GED: Official transcripts of your GED scores can be requested at www.acenet.edu . You will need to provide the name of the location and year the test was taken. Please request that the scores be sent directly to the Institute for Prison Ministries. The fee for this service is nominal ($14). You can obtain further information by calling the GED hotline at 1-800-626-9433.
College: Contact the Office of the Registrar at the institution for further information. Often colleges will have this service available on their websites.
Upon acceptance into the program, you will be contacted by a member of the SCM staff who will assist you in the Registration process.
Scholarships (partial) are available for worthy applicants.
SCM offers both online and residential courses, although the bulk of the coursework is done online.
Online Classes: The SCM online credential program enables you to study under leaders in the field without leaving your home, community, work and ministry. Our rapidly growing program allows you to earn your credential primarily online, supplemented by two short intensive courses taken in Wheaton, IL. Through online classes, this program offers flexible opportunities for an excellent education without removing you from your immediate community.
Residential Classes: These courses are offered only during the Summer session. Residential courses provide students with a unique learning community. Under the guidance of their professors, students will be able to learn, grow, and be shaped by one another during their time together. Summer classes are in an intensive format (5 days on the Wheaton College campus) and consist of advance and post work. Typically the advance work consists of reading and small interactive papers that will be available 8 weeks before class. Post work will be due 3 weeks after the last day of class.
Both online and residential classes are listed in the SCM Course Catalog.
To see a breakdown of SCM’s Tuition and Fees, click here.
Classes taken for this certficate can be used toward an undergraduate or graduate degree. Wheaton College is an accredited university with a strong academic repution and credits should transfer to other colleges. It is up to the receiving college or university to determine if the courses will go toward a particular degree or certificate program
Advance Work Assignments
Residency classes are one-week intensive courses held on our campus. There are pre-residency assignments listed in your syllabus that must be completed prior to the first day of class as well as post-residency assignments. Classes start at 8:00 am and end at 5:00 pm each day, with a one-hour lunch break.
This applies to Residential Courses ONLY. Residency classes begin at 8:00 am on Monday morning; it is critical that you plan your travel so that you arrive on campus by 5:00 pm on the Sunday prior to the beginning of class! This will give you time to settle in, get acquainted with the campus and your roommate and get rested up for the challenging week. The earliest you will be ready to depart from Wheaton is mid-afternoon on Friday (class is over at noon).
The residency courses will be offered on the campus of Wheaton College, in Wheaton, IL (a suburb of Chicago).
This applies to Residential Courses ONLY. On-campus housing for the residency period is in student apartments that are approximately one block from the Billy Graham Center, where the classes will be held. The one-bedroom apartments are fully furnished. When you check in, you will be given the following linens: towels, sheets, pillow, and blanket. Each apartment is equipped with two twin beds, dressers, desks, a small kitchen and rather large living room. The private bath is off of the bedroom and is equipped with a tub/shower combo, sink and toilet. You will need to bring your own toiletries. The apartments are air-conditioned and wi-fi internet service is available. There are no TVs in the apartments and you will need a calling card to make long-distance calls from the apartment phone.
This applies to Residential Courses ONLY. For those who will be staying on-campus during the Summer Residential Courses, meals are included in the cost for room and board. However, if you are commuting you will need to purchase a meal plan. All meals are served in Anderson Commons (our campus dining room).