School of Social Welfare Receives Grant for Addiction Workforce Development

The School of Social Welfare (SSW) at Stony Brook University has established a new partnership with the New York State Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS) that will expand and strengthen the ​addictions services ​workforce in New York State. OASAS is funding this initiative through the Opioid Settlement, which identifies expansion of harm reduction and treatment as top priorities.

This partnership with OASAS will provide scholarship monies that will enable participants to receive best practices training from the School of Social Welfare that will lead to CASAC (Credentialed Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Counselor) credentialing by OASAS for direct care providers in the field of alcoholism and substance abuse in New York State.

Shari E. Miller Credit: Steve Glass
Shari E. Miller Credit: Steve Glass

Beginning this September 1, and continuing over the next two years, the SSW will provide the 350-hour CASAC training for up to 200 accepted applicants with various levels of training and experience. The CASAC training provided by the school will make a significant contribution toward building a strong workforce of state certified practitioners who can help individuals with substance use disorders get the recovery services they need.

“The need to train and develop a skilled workforce to address the growing and emergent prevalence of substance use and addiction at the local, state, and national levels could not be more critical,” said Shari E. Miller, professor and dean of the SSW. “The School of Social Welfare at Stony Brook University, one of New York State’s flagship institutions, is committed to catalyzing our educational and research expertise to address addiction and the overdose epidemic. We are deeply appreciative of our collaboration with OASAS, which will enable our School to provide state-of-the-art CASAC training. We are certain this collaboration will empower a well-prepared, competent, and responsive workforce to change lives while fighting this public health crisis.”

Instrumental in establishing this program from the SSW are Melissa J. Earle,​ ​clinical associate professor​, ​director of Online Education; Shelley Horwitz, assistant dean, Manhattan Operations; Sawanee Khongsawatwaja, assistant dean of Budget and Finance; and Dean Miller.

Other SUNY schools in the OASAS-led partnership include Alfred State University and Empire State College.

For more information about the scholarship program, see this New York State press release.

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