Texas Tech University

Kitty Harris

2009 Texas Tech Integrated Scholar

George C. Miller Family Regents Professor and Associate Dean for Outreach and Engagement, College of Human Sciences; Director, Center for Prevention and Resiliency; Director, Center for the Study of Addiction and Recovery; Faculty Member in the Department of Applied and Professional Studies and Honors College

Kitty Harris-WilkesI think as a university our attitude is about what are we here to give back. And as long as you approach service with that attitude, I'm learning a lot. I have the opportunity to share a lot, and it's important that I give back. I think that committing your heart to a real sense of servant leadership, where you believe that you have been given much, you have a lot to pass on. I think that's really important.

What is your research objective/interest(s)?

My research objectives/interests revolve around two areas—addiction recovery and addiction prevention. I am very interested in the prevention aspect beginning in elementary school and especially middle school, and equally interested in the recovery aspect—when the prevention does not work—in college students.

How do you feel your research impacts the globe?

I feel like my research impacts the globe, because almost everyone at some level is touched by addiction. It is a global problem with very little known about the actual science of recovery.

Where do you get your inspiration?

I get my inspiration from the students I work with who have been given a second chance at an education and more importantly a second chance at life! It would be difficult to work in this building and not be overcome each day with gratitude and joy.

What type(s) of service projects do you enjoy doing?

I enjoy service projects that involve making the life of someone better. I enjoy working with teenagers who are struggling to get through adolescence and need a word of encouragement and support. It is amazing the difference that you can make in their lives.

What are you currently working on?

I am currently working with the Talkington School for Young Women Leaders, the Covenant Body Mind Initiative and several foundation boards.

What advice do you have for new faculty members on balancing the components of an integrated scholar into their careers (academics, research and service)?

The advice that I would have for balancing all of the elements of a career is to focus on what your priorities are and not to forget the importance of investing in “human capital”!

Scholar Background

My educational background is in communications and rhetoric, and human development and family studies. Since I have been in Lubbock the last 31 years, I would consider it my hometown although I grew up primarily in the Northeast and Midwest.


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