Federal Officials Visit Center to Learn about College Recovery Centers

Conference will promote the establishment of substance abuse recovery communities on college campuses.

The center provides peer-based support, 12-step support, and academic services for more than 80 students in recovery.

The center provides peer-based support, 12-step support, and academic services for more than 80 students in recovery.

When the White House has questions about substance abuse and recovery at institutions of higher learning, they look to Texas Tech University for guidance.

Today, officials from the Office of National Drug Control Policy and the Department of Education join about 40 universities attending the Collegiate Recovery Conference at Texas Tech, promoting the establishment of recovery communities on college campuses. The conference continues through Friday (April 8).

The Center for the Study of Addiction and Recovery (CSAR) provides peer-based support, 12-step support, and academic services for more than 80 students in recovery from drug and alcohol addictions, as well as eating disorders.

“Our success is based on the success of the students we work with,” said Kitty Harris, director of the center. “We have less than a 6 percent relapse rate, which means we have a 94 percent success rate with our students in the program. And our cumulative GPA for students here is 3.34, with a graduate rate of 80 percent. Both are higher than the university average.”

The program was founded more than 20 years ago, and Texas Tech researchers have literally written the book on the subject. Using curriculum developed with federal funding, CSAR faculty and staff has helped replicate the program on college campuses throughout the nation. There are now 18 active programs at campuses coast to coast, including Vanderbilt University and the University of Mississippi. Several others, like Southern Methodist University and the University of Alabama, are just getting started.

“Schools now realize they should have resources for students recovering from substance abuse problems,” said Matt Russell, associate director of replication, CSAR. “Our program has evolved from a growing need.”

The conference will begin with a keynote address by David Mineta, Deputy Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, and continue with a number of presentations on the most recent findings in the area of addiction recovery. Included in the presentations will be John Kelly, associate professor in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. In addition there will be break-out sessions facilitated by experts within the field. Each will focus on sharing new recovery programming ideas, and research findings, as well as providing tips and information for starting and sustaining recovery communities similar to Texas Tech’s pioneering peer-based program.

CSAR is one of the first and is the largest program of its kind in the nation.


CSAR

CSAR

The Center for the Study of Addiction & Recovery is committed to achieving six primary goals

  • Quality, long-term recovery for the student population.
  • Development of resiliency in recovering students.
  • Education about the disease of addiction and effective strategies for the prevention and treatment of its consequences.
  • Service within the university, local, state and national communities.
  • Creation of a replication model that will allow other institutions to offer similar programs to their students.
  • Research that impacts the way addiction is viewed from an individual, familial and social perspective..

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