- What is your background in substance abuse prevention?
I started working in the area of substance abuse prevention when I began at the University of Tennessee in 2012. At that time, UT did not have a position dedicated primarily to Alcohol & Other Drug Prevention & Intervention. I took the lead on collaborating with University units such as UT Police to enhance campus wide substance use prevention and intervention efforts.
2. How did you first become involved with our coalition?
I first became involved with the coalition after attending a CADCA conference. At CADCA I learned how important it is to engage and collaborate with entities both inside and outside of the University to effectively engage and effect change in the University and greater community. I connected with Webster Bailey from Cornerstone of Recovery at the conference and it just so happened that he was serving as chair of the coalition. Webster invited me to a meeting, and UT has been involved ever since.
3.Tell us a bit about UT’s Center for Health Education & Wellness and what you offer?
The mission of the Center for Health Education & Wellness is to engage in prevention and intervention efforts to increase awareness, impact student decision making, and positively influence our university community. Some of the specific ways in which we engage with students are through health promotion, prevention, and intervention programs. These programs are facilitated by our staff as well as the student peer heath educators, VOLS 2 VOLS. The center offers information on a wide array of topics from sexual health to alcohol and drug use prevention and intervention to case management services. Currently, at the top of our priority prevention initiatives are sexual violence and alcohol and drug use. As such, we also provide an Alcohol Education Program tailored for our students based on their level of need as well as the Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students program for students with higher need for intervention.
4.What do you love most about your work at the Center for Health Education & Wellness?
I love that every day at the Center for Health Education & Wellness provides a new opportunity to positively impact students. The student volunteers and full time staff that I have the privilege of working with show amazing dedication to improving the current health and wellness of students and teaching them how to live healthy and productive lives once they graduate and on into the future.
5. How can members of the community get involved in the Center for Health Education & Wellness?
The Center for Health Education and Wellness welcomes community involvement from individuals and businesses who would like to help expand educational opportunities regarding risk reduction strategies for students who choose to consume alcohol. The student group Rocky Top Recovery Community was founded in the spring of 2015. This is the first group of its kind at the university, and the group will work to become established during the 2015-16. If you are an individual or business who would like to find out how you can be involved in the work at the Center please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
6. How can students get in touch with you to learn more about your services?
Students can get in touch with the Center to learn more about our services by visiting our website http://wellness.utk.edu, they can call 865-974-5725 8 am – 5 pm M-F, or email the center at email@example.com.