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Dawn Farm Addiction and Recovery Education Series

Mar 7, 2014

The transition to a college environment can pose significant risk to recovering students, and to students susceptible to alcohol/other drug problems. Many colleges and universities – including the University of Michigan - have developed highly effective programs to help recovering students maintain their recovery, excel academically and have a normative college experience apart from the culture of drinking/drug use. Research demonstrates exceptionally high rates of both academic success and sustained recovery among students who participate in collegiate recovery programs. This presentation provides an overview of the national and local efforts to build recovery support programs on college campuses, discusses how colleges can support students in recovery from alcohol/other drug addiction, and provides information about what parents and students can look for as they explore options for higher education. 


The program is presented by Mary Jo Desprez, MA, the Director of Wolverine Wellness for the University of Michigan Health Service who was instrumental in implementing a very successful, active collegiate recovery program at the University of Michigan; and Matthew Statman, LMSW, CAADC; the program manager for the University of Michigan Collegiate Recovery Program.  Mary Jo is a native of Ann Arbor, Michigan. She received her BA (1985) and MA (1987) from Michigan State University and has worked in the field of college health and wellness for over 20 years. As part of her current role as Director of Health Promotion and Community Relations, Mary Jo manages both the Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention Program and the Collegiate Recovery Program at the University of Michigan. Mary Jo has also been an adjunct instructor at Eastern Michigan University since 1997.  Mary Jo serves as the Co-Chair for both the Ann Arbor Campus and Community Coalition (A2C3), and the Michigan Campus Coalition (MC3). She is a Center Associate for the Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention (U.S Department of Education). In October 2010, she became a member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT). In May 2003 she was certified by the State of Michigan, Department of Community Health, as an HIV test counselor. In May 2002 Mary Jo successfully completed the curriculum for Critical Incident Stress Management certification. Matt worked with Dawn Farm from 2004 through 2012. He started as a House Manager and Resident Aid and later spent several years working as a Detox Counselor and Team Leader. He has also worked as an Outpatient Therapist and an Administrator and Therapist in Dawn Farm’s Correctional Programs, and as a Residential Therapist at Dawn Farm Downtown. Matt was the Education Series coordinator from 2007 through 2012. He is currently the Manager of the Collegiate Recovery Program at the University of Michigan. He graduated from Eastern Michigan University in 2009 with his BSW and received his MSW from the University of Michigan in 2010.



This program is part of the Dawn Farm Education Series, a FREE, annual workshop series developed to provide accurate, helpful, hopeful, practical, current information about chemical dependency, recovery, family and related issues.  The Education Series is organized by Dawn Farm, a non-profit community of programs providing a continuum of chemical dependency services. For information, please see