College can be as much an opportunity to start a career as to start over, but taking classes while in drug rehab can prove risky. College is a place of academia, and likewise, a backdrop for drug and alcohol experimentation. That isn’t to say someone in drug rehab shouldn’t attend college, but it does suggest a level of awareness ahead of time to avoid unnecessary exposure to drug triggers. The reward of earning a degree while maintaining sobriety can be a rewarding a life-changing experience, both in terms of accomplishing goals and increased opportunities.
Rewards Of College And Drug Rehab
There are many rewards that come with both college and sobriety. Career opportunities that can improve a person’s sense of self-worth and financial security are more abundant for those with an earned degree. And a renewed sense of accomplishment that comes with earning that degree.
For many who are leaving behind a life of drug use, a change of scenery is hugely beneficial. College represents a positive way to escape old routines and begin a new life path. For others, who began college prior to becoming addicted to drugs or alcohol, college during drug rehab represents an opportunity to return to some semblance of normalcy.
If someone has already taken time away from a career or work to enter rehab, this can prove an ideal time to return to school. They might have the financial resources, transportation, and the housing or child care assistance to manage both rehab and college level classes.
Rewards of College while in Rehabs:
- Improved career opportunities
- Increased self-worth
- Sense of accomplishment
- Change of scenery
Risks Associated With Returning To School While In Rehab
Risks associated with beginning or returning to college while in rehab can be a bit discouraging. College drinking is a huge epidemic in this country, with as many as 50 percent of student engaging in moderate to heavy drinking, abusing prescription or illicit drugs, and smoking. This makes avoiding drug triggers more challenging.
Additionally, attending classes, studying, and completing assignments can take away from a focus on recovery. Good coping skills along with some serious time management skills can aid in a successful recovery and return to school.
Part of managing time means making sure you are taking care of you during times of stress, including finals. Equally as important is finding new ways to celebrate small victories. Grandiosity is an enemy of the recovering drug- and alcohol- addicted person and it’s easy to fall into old habits, even when something positive happens that might normally be rewarded with a drink or a smoke; plan instead for a slice of chocolate cake, a movie with friends, or even a relaxing bath to reward the achievement of school or rehab-related goals.
Risks of College while in Rehabs:
- Drug triggers
- Taking time away from rehab
- Increased stress
College Rehab Programs
Increasingly, an individual’s needs are being examined when designing treatment plans to combat drug and alcohol addiction. Some rehab programs offer college (transferable) courses in addition to drug or alcohol treatment. These programs offer a unique setting and environment to support a person’s long-term educational and sobriety goals. Offering a supportive setting for someone who may be struggling either with school or sobriety, a college-rehab program can keep a person in tune with their overarching goal of long-term recovery.
Some universities understand the importance of offering onsite clubs and support groups to students in recovery. These groups host alcohol- and drug-free events to encourage the building of social networks independent of addiction and addiction behaviors.
Improve Your Chance Of Success
If you decide to wait to return to classes until after the completion of rehabilitation, there are some ways to improve your chance of success. Firstly, make sure you have a solid support network, including a good sponsor. A good sponsor or support person should be available by phone or in person and know the steps toward recovery. It is also particularly helpful if they have been living in sobriety for some time.
Locate a convenient support group in proximity to where you plan to spend the most amount of time. Additionally, one-on-one counseling is also vital. Scheduling these meetings ahead of time can prevent them from falling to the wayside, and can keep you focused on your sobriety goals. Managing stress and developing good coping skills are an essential part of maintaining sobriety, even through the stress of balancing long hours at school, rehab, work, and exams.
Online classes can also benefit someone who is attempting to complete rehab and college level coursework, increasing flexibility and the time someone has to spend on recovery work.
As with anyone in recovery, finding new hobbies or rewarding activities that can supplement the place the addiction once held in your life is another beneficial way to ease stress, while learning or engaging in something new.
If possible, locate a treatment facility or aftercare program in the vicinity of the college or university you plan to attend. With the number of college students abusing drugs and alcohol in this country, an increasing number of rehabilitation facilities are opening within range of schools to accommodate.
How to Improve your Chance of Success:
- Solid support network
- Good sponsor
- Support groups in proximity to school
- Rehab in proximity to school
- Online classes
- Begin a new and rewarding hobby
Take A Medical Leave For Drug Rehab
If you are a current student and struggling with a drug or alcohol problem, you can enter rehab without a total disruption of your college plans. Typically, colleges offer an excused medical leave that includes drug rehab. Even weeks into your semester, some colleges will allow you to withdrawal or drop some or all classes to accommodate your recovery.
Get Help Today For Your Alcohol Or Drug Addiction
Get educated and get clean. If you’re struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction, help is here. DrugRehab.org offers online resources and can connect you with the professional resources and treatment options that will work best for your individual needs. Contact and speak to someone in confidence today for a second chance at a great and rewarding life.