Uhler, Bethany Shaune (2020). Beyond the Corner: Incorporating Music Into a Juvenile Detention Center. University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Uhler, Bethany Shaune (2020). Beyond the Corner: Incorporating Music Into a Juvenile Detention Center. University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Author Affiliations: University of North Carolina at Greensboro
Artforms: Chamber music, string instruments
Program: Chatham Strings Program
Program (Study) Location: Chatham Youth Development Center, Siler City, North Carolina
Program Description: Detention-center youth are taught how to play violin, viola and cello in weekly group classes. They also perform in a chamber group as a way to learn new skills, have new experiences, practice pro-social behavior and have a positive outlet for emotions.
Study Published: Unpublished doctoral dissertation
Participant Type: Adjudicated youth aged 13-17
Sample Size: 8 teens: 1 White female, 3 Black females, 1 Hispanic female, 2 Black males and 1 white male
Data Type: Qualitative: personal interviews with youth and facility staff, field notes
Evaluation Focus: To explore the role music may play in rehabilitation and, specifically, to document any benefits experienced by members of a string ensemble.

Summary of Impact: The data analysis revealed four themes:

  • Exposure and New Experiences: All participants reported that the experience was entirely new to them.
  • Pride and Recognition: The youth reported “experiencing satisfaction in their success, realizing their potential to do something positive, receiving positive reinforcement from others, and making people they loved proud.”
  • Personal and Interpersonal Development: “Youth reflected that participation in the string program improved emotional release, behavior regulation, frustration tolerance, time management, communication skills and willingness to help others.”
  • Collaborating to Help Youth: Staff reported “that the string program contributed to the community effort of restorative justice.”

KEYWORDS: accomplishment, cello, chamber music, emotional release, juvenile, pro-social behavior, string instruments, viola, violin, youth

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