"Before I got locked up, I didn't have much faith in anything but money," he said.
Now he is studying for the Test Assessing Secondary Completion, or TASC, which recently replaced the General Educational Development test in Indiana.
Both said they made it to the PLUS program by working hard, achieving all of the requirements of their former units, avoiding situations rendering them guilty by association and ignoring those attempting to provoke them into confrontations.
"Here, you got to let it go," Derrick said. "Why care about what anybody else says?"
There are many things Derrick said he has learned at the facility he plans on applying to his life once he leaves. The knitting is one of them. He has four nephews and a niece whose birth is expected around the time his sentence is up. He said he looks forward to making hats and scarves for them.
Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or email@example.com. Follow him: @PharosMAK