Candler students fulfill their Contextual Education I requirement at a juvenile detention center.

Metro Regional Youth Detention Center

Regional Youth Detention Centers (RYDCs) are secure short-term centers operated by the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ). RYDCs ar efor youths awaiting trial in Juvenile or Superior Court, or awaiting a community-based placement elsewhere, more suitable for their needs. Candler Contextual Education I students assist in establishing hope, a commitment to community, and the duty to care by supporting positive change through youth accountability and responsible youth leadership and service. As Chaplain interns, students do this with particular attention to the disciplines of prayer, study, meditation and service as a lifelong commitment.

Site Work

Students at this site will work Thursdays 3:30 p.m. - 7:30 pm.

Youth at the RYDC have diverse and unique circumstances surrounding their detention. Contextual Education I interns will engage youth and staff by providing pastoral care, and will have the opportunity to assist youth in the following areas:

Individual Pastoral Care:

  • Contextual Education I students will have the opportunity to visit newly committed youth in the intake area who are awaiting screening. Individual sessions might focus on helping students deal with uncertainty and transition.
  • Youth having difficulty adjusting to the RYDC setting may speak with a Chaplain Intern, to help dispel anxiety and impulsivity associated with detainment.
  • For youth adjudicated in Superior Court and awaiting transition into adult facilities within the Department of Corrections, spiritual counseling may help youth in coping with the unknown, and developing skills to handle anxiety and stress.
  • For youth preparing to transfer to a group-home or other setting pastoral care may focus on developing skills that will assist youth in the reentry phase.

Group Pastoral Care: Contextual Education I interns will work collaboratively to design and implement a curriculum which assists the youth in their spiritual formation. Sessions may include bible study, prayer, meditation and art. Using creative approaches and interactive strategies, these group activities will tie spiritual teachings and traditions to related social skill enhancement. 

Fall 2018 Reflection Group

Wednesday, 2:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. at Candler, led by Rev. Danny Horne, Site Supervisor.

Spring 2019 Integrative Seminar

Tuesday, 2:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. at Candler, led by Rev. Danny Horne and Dr. Elizabeth Corrie.

Pastoral Care Class

Students who enroll in Metro RYDC, DJJ, will also enroll in Intro to Pastoral Care PC501CE 1 in the fall semester (Tuesday 2:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.), taught by Dr. Jennifer Winingder.

Faculty Academic Advisor

Dr. Elizabeth Corrie will serve as the academic advisor for students working at Metro RYDC, DJJ students and will join the group for the spring Integrative Seminar.

Site Mission

Chaplaincy Services supports the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice mission through spiritual guidance, counseling, education and crisis intervention to youth and staff. Its vision is “Building Youth for the future through teamwork and community partnership."

About the Site

Metro RYDC Regional Youth Detention Center (RYDC) provides temporary, secure care and supervision to youth who have been charged with offenses or who have been adjudicated delinquent and are awaiting placement. In addition, youth who have been committed to the custody in Metro RYDC or any DJJ facility are sometimes placed there while awaiting treatment in a community program or a long-term facility.

Student Reflection

MDiv student Carmen Cunningham reflects on her Contextual Education I experience at Metro Regional Youth Detention Center during the 2016-2017 academic year.

Additional Requirements & Accessibility

In addition to the criminal background check Candler requires of all admitted students, this site requires an additional criminal background check administered by the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice, completion of the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice application and online orientation, and fingerprinting. Because of DJJ policy, students who have pending or unresolved legal charges are not eligible to work at this site. Students who register for this site will receive additional information about the clearance process as soon as they register for classes, and should work with the Office of Contexual Education to initiate the clearance prior to on-site orientation in August.


Metro Regional Youth Detention Center
1300 Constitution Road, SE
Atlanta, GA 30316-4604

Site Supervisor

Rev. Danny A. Horne, Director of Chaplaincy Services for the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice, serves as Director of Chaplaincy Services and is a Candler Alumni. 
Phone: 404-295-0057