10th Annual Operation Recovery Event - Sept. 20

Operation Recovery Logo

On Thursday, September 20 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., many supporters and sponsors from Minneapolis College, including the CRP, will host its 10th Annual Operation Recovery with the goal of coming together and staying connected in the name of recovery.

This event includes more than 40 community vendors along with music provided by KMOJ’s William “Bake Show” Baker, plus an art exhibit, prizes, treats and the following:

•    Narcan Training: 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m., T.1400
•    Recovery Bingo: 10:00 a.m. and Noon, T.1400
•    Tours of the CRP drop-in center: 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m., H.2100
•    Addiction Counseling alumni pizza party: 2:00 - 4:00 p.m., T.1400

Recovery is Real at Minneapolis College

Recovery is on the forefront at Minneapolis College. Not only does the College house the oldest Addiction Counseling Program in the State of Minnesota, the behind-the-scenes collaborations around recovery are paramount and engage students, faculty and staff across the College.

Sabbatical Leads to Innovation – Creating a Collegiate Recovery Community 

When Dr. Jonathan Lofgren, Addiction Counseling faculty, took a semester-long sabbatical in 2016 to study collegiate recovery programs, he had no idea he would be leading efforts on campus alongside his colleagues within a year.

“The purpose of my sabbatical was to study, design and plan the foundation to implement, sustain and institutionalize a College Recovery Program (CRP) at Minneapolis College,” said Jonathan, who spent nearly 20 years pursuing an education without a program like this to support his own recovery. “CRPs provide safe and welcoming environments where students in recovery from substance use disorders have access to the necessary support for academic, personal, professional and recovery success.”

According to research, college students make up one of the largest groups of drug abusers nationwide. Young people (ages 18 to 24) are already at a heightened risk of addiction and students who are enrolled in a full-time college program are twice as likely to abuse drugs and alcohol than those who don’t attend college.

“We can do something about this issue or simply leave our heads in the sand,” said Dr. Sharon Pierce, president, Minneapolis College, who whole-heartedly supports these efforts on campus.

The CRP, located in H.2100, provides access to individual, group and peer recovery alongside academic and personal support services. Programming includes an annual National Recovery Month Event, weekly All-Recovery meetings, weekly Mindfulness and 12-Step meetings and social and recovery support hours. 

The CRP is a collaborative effort connecting the College as a whole, the College’s Addiction Counseling Academic Program, Student Affairs, Student Life, the Addiction Counseling Club and the Boynton Health Clinic on campus. The CRP relies heavy on student engagement and members receive a digitized coin, designed by Bayla McDougal, Addiction Counseling faculty, to recognize their involvement.

Support and Healing Through a Recovery Lifestyle

“Everyone comes from a different path that is unique to them and the CRP provides a safe place where people in recovery can come together for one-another via support and healing through a recovery lifestyle and education,” said Brian K. Lindell, CRP student worker who chose Minneapolis College because it‘s the only two-year college in the state with a CRP.  

“It has been through my peers’ encouragement and support that I have been able to succeed in my education. Since entering school to pursue a degree in Addiction Counseling, I have become active in the Student Senate as the director of Legislative Affairs on the cabinet board, I co-represent our college district within LeadMN. I am presently the secretary for the Student Life and Budget Committee and I am secretary for the Addiction Counseling Club.  I also serve as a student tutor in the new Academic Success Center.” 

“No student should have to choose between recovery and a college education,” said Patrice Salmeri, Augsburg StepUP Program, who mentored Minneapolis College in the creation of its CRP.

Alongside colleges like Augsburg, Jonathan hopes the CRP at Minneapolis College becomes part of a movement to create more CRPs across the country. The program is off to a great start and was recently selected by Transforming Youth Recovery as a pilot site. Through the pilot, the CRP was awarded a $7,500 grant and is part of a three-year research study of recovery attitudes on college campuses. The pilot will inform programming on college campuses nationwide.