Fairfield University
| November 2013 | Fairfield University News Channel

Recovery House Helps Students in Recovery from Addiction

Fairfield University announces the opening of Recovery House, a residential home designed specifically to meet the needs of students in recovery from addictions. Progressive and mission driven, Recovery House is for young men who want to learn how to balance their education with their recovery. Recovery House provides students with an independent living environment of fully integrated support services, recovery coaching, and access to many recreational activities and special events. An unmarked university-owned house is conveniently located within walking distance to campus. Students support each other while maintaining personal accountability and building meaningful relationships based in friendship, sobriety and their college experiences. A house manager lives on premise and is available to advise and support students. Students must apply to live in the Recovery House and agree to abide by the standards of that community. All house occupants are part of Fairfield University’s Recovery Program, which promotes healthier choices and substance-free living through a nurturing and affirming environment.

“Our Recovery Program involves mind, body, spirit,” said Fairfield University’s Susan Birge, EdD., L.P.C., Assistant Vice President and Director of Counseling and Psychological Services. “We have social events, academic support, meditation, counseling, psychiatry if warranted, and coordination to AA and NA meetings on and off campus. With Recovery House, we want to breathe life into the concept of ‘inclusivity.’ We want our students to return to Fairfield, and we want prospective students to feel welcome and supported at Fairfield.”

As part of these efforts, Fairfield University recently joined the Association of Recovery Schools, a national network of 17 colleges and universities that includes the University of Vermont, University of Virginia, University of Texas, Vanderbilt, and Rutgers. Fairfield University is the only Connecticut school in the network and the first of the Jesuit schools to join. “Our funding for Recovery House comes from two State grants, a private donor, and some University dollars,” said Birge. “Although Recovery House is currently only available for men, hopefully in the future we will have a Recovery House for women.”

Recovery House is the latest initiative in Fairfield University’s efforts to address substance abuse issues. Orientation for first-year students includes presentations about substance abuse, healthy choices and campus resources. Prior to coming to campus, freshmen are required to complete AlcoholEdu, an online alcohol education program. Fairfield University provides educational classes, clinical assessments and treatment modalities including motivational interviewing, harm reduction and 12-step approach. The University hosts AA and ACOA (adult children of alcoholics) meetings on campus and offers individual and group counseling as well as psychiatric treatment. Students also receive training to assist other students such as the Red Watch Band Training, a bystander program. The University also provides a Recovery Lounge, a private area with flat screen TV, gaming, library offerings, coffee and snacks for students to relax, socialize or study.

Recovery House is a collaborative effort involving the Office of Student Affairs, the Office of Residential Life, the Dean of Students, and Counseling & Psychological Services, and is coordinated by Students-in-Recovery Board of Directors consisting of students, mental health clinicians, faculty, administrators and alumni. For more information or to apply for Recovery housing, please contact Counseling & Psychological Services by calling: (203) 254- 4000, ext. 2146.

Last modified:  Thu, 21 Nov 2013 09:29:00 EST


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