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Graduate School of Professional Psychology
Substance Use Disorder Psychology

Substance Use Disorder Psychology

Serving as a regional and national model for this serious social issue

Substance use disorder problems are rampant on university campuses. The issue of substance use disorder is not just around recreational use of drugs and alcohol, but how this use – or misuse – affects the memory, decision making, and motivation of students, especially those in their late teenage years and into their 20s, when their brains are still developing.

Substance use disorder frequently leads to learning and mental health problems, in addition to academic consequences. Problems of substance use disorders on campuses are often are seen as conduct violations or signs of psychopathology, rather than as developmental and behavioral issues that could be addressed by a comprehensive psycho-educational approach.

To find effective solutions, substance use disorders need to receive greater attention in academic circles – and on college campuses – to ensure our students are receiving the attention and services they need to continue with productive and meaningful lives.

Building on its 40 years of serving DU and the Denver community through a unique approach to education, training and service, the Graduate School of Professional Psychology is perfectly poised to expand its mental health concentrations to include a focus on substance use disorders. Through this effort, DU will set an example for other universities to emulate as it assists students and families in finding education, intervention, and treatment.