Joshua's path to academic success was long and arduous. In ninth grade, Josh's reading and writing skills ranged from a 2nd to 4th grade level. Eventually, he dropped out of school. Since his incarceration in 2005, however, Josh received his GED and completed a Paralegal Program with highest distinction. He also completed a class through Xavier University and is currently working on a program in Psychology and Social Work. After that, he would like to complete an Associates and Bachelor's Degree through either Adams State University or Ohio University.
For prisoners, family bonds are extremely important. Josh has participated in The Family is First Project for two years. This program helps inmates establish strong relationships with their families. Furthermore, Josh and Steff have completed a pre-marital correspondence course. After more than 7 years of being together, the two plan to get married.
So far, Josh has trained more than 40 dogs for 4 Paws for Ability, a non-profit organization in Xenia, Ohio. 4 Paws places service dogs with both veterans and children with special needs. Josh is responsible for potty training and basic obedience. He teaches the dogs to sit, lay down, give paw, etc. He also makes sure that the puppies get plenty of play time. In addition, Josh took care of several staff members' dogs when he was incarcerated at Warren Correctional.
Besides furthering his education, building strong relationships with his loved ones, and training service dogs for children with special needs, Josh also participates in a wide variety of programs. Whenever the opportunity presents itself, Josh signs up for classes and programs that help him learn from and with others. Josh loves to engage with people who, like him, try to lead meaningful and productive lives from behind bars.
In his free time, Josh likes to draw and create things out of a variety of materials (such as oil pastels, wood, etc.). He enjoys building jewelry boxes and other items out of popsicle sticks and cedar wood.