Friday, December 7, 2018

USTF Student Karlie Berry Presents the Perceptions of Programming inside Diversionary Treatment Units

This past November, I had the opportunity to attend the American Society of Criminology (ASC) conference in Atlanta, Georgia.  ASC is an annual conference that allows students, scholars, and professionals throughout the criminal justice and criminology community to discuss various topics of interest within the field. Although presentations range from focusing on subjects such as juveniles or policing to ideas including terrorism or technology, my panel presentation discussed the correctional system.  I explored the perceptions of programming inside Diversionary Treatment Units, which are essentially restricted housing units for severely mentally ill.  After many days of interviewing, observing, and analyzing data, my findings concluded that even though staffs’ perceptions of inmate programming is generally positive, they do not believe that the types of programs are appropriate or the process acceptable.  This is an important disconnect to recognize because it affects frontline implementation and application by the staff, and ultimately, the livelihood of inmates. All in all, the conference was an amazing opportunity and an unforgettable experience as it allowed me to hone my presenting skills, increase my knowledge about criminal justice innovations, and meet many admirable individuals.