Graduation Year


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Lahnna Catalino

Reader 2

Sheila Walker

Rights Information

2019 Sophia I. Lobo


The best reintegration intervention for inmates remains unclear. Due to the high prevalence of PTSD in the inmate population, this study suggests that post-traumatic growth can be predictive in lowering recidivism rates. Carl Rogers’ person-centered therapy also has the theoretical potential to bridge the gap between trauma recovery and successful reintegration for inmates. An emphasis on self-compassion in person-centered therapy may also be effective in building the resources for emotional regulation in inmates. 156 inmates from the San Bernardino maximum and minimum security prison participated in a ten-year longitudinal study that explored how self-compassion based person-centered therapy could be used to lower recidivism rates, with the mediational effect of post-traumatic growth. Participants were given self-report measures for post-traumatic growth, meaning in life and self-compassion before interventions began and prior to their release. In the first year, participants engaged in self-compassion based person-centered therapy every other week for three months, followed by a week-long refresher course for the four years following. Checkpoints monitoring recidivism rates occurred at one month, six months, one year and five years post release. Results showed that self-compassion based person-centered therapy significantly lowered recidivism rates with a significant mediational effect of post-traumatic growth. Post-traumatic growth showed stronger predictive power compared to meaning in life. Self-compassion levels of the inmates went up after the five-year intervention. Results indicate that trauma rehabilitation should be further emphasized in inmate reintegration.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.