Texas Tech University

Center for Collegiate Recovery Communities Transition to Online Student Support

Ashley Brister

May 27, 2020

CCRC Transition to Online Support Recovery TTU

CCRC continues to provide support for Texas Tech students in recovery during campus closure

When campus closed amid ongoing COVID-19 concerns, many services had to quickly adapt in order to meet the needs of students. The Center for Collegiate Recovery Communities (CCRC) at Texas Tech knew that maintaining a community for students in recovery would be essential.

"We have found that we need to have adaptive engagement strategies for our students," Director of the CCRC, Tom Kimball, Ph.D., LMFT said. "For example, we are having better attendance in our seminar classes via zoom than we have ever had. We are finding that some students really like interacting through a variety of different means including GroupMe, text, email, and video conferencing. Once we return to a new normal, we will incorporate better use of technology to stay connected and to support our students in recovery."

The CCRC operates a Zoom lobby for students to join during the weekday in addition to online support group sessions. For the staff, ensuring they are taking breaks and being aware of their own mental health has been very important to maintain an increased workload.

"Our students truly care about each other and my staff has been tremendous in going above and beyond for our students," Dr. Kimball said. "I am inspired about what they are doing and how they are doing it."

Program Coordinator Laura Nobles said they have been providing more meetings and contact with students and continuing to focus on the sense of community the center has created for so many students.

"Our program is based on community. Addiction does not happen in a vacuum and neither does recovery," she said.

As Texas Tech plans for the transition back to campus, Laura notes that they will evaluate meeting capacity and find new ways of providing support, given what they have learned during this time.

"As a staff, we've really tried to stay up to date on what is working, what we can do better, and that's all virtual. The whole system is experiencing a virtual movement and it's not just our students that are getting support, but as a staff, we're staying up on best practices," Laura said.