Millersville University will host the “Compass Mark, From Challenges to Choices: Creating Positive Change conference ” later this month. This year’s theme is “Rethinking Diversity” and will focus on providing practical, applicable tools for those in the helping professions who are on the front line of the addiction crisis. The conference will take place in the Student Memorial Center at MU on Oct. 24 starting at 8 a.m.
The conference was founded in 2011 when Compass Mark, an organization that provides addiction prevention programming, decided to combine two separate events, the Student Assistance Program Conference and the Prevention Forum. This is the only program in Lancaster County where those addressing addiction prevention, intervention and treatment could network and learn together. Conference attendees will include K-12 intervention teams, local addiction counselors, probation officers and more.
Dr. Alex Redcay, an assistant professor in Social Work at Millersville, is working with Compass Mark and is excited to organize this conference. “The Millersville community has worked tirelessly over many years to prevent and respond to addiction issues on campus and in the community,” says Redcay. “This conference is a continuation of those efforts but with new, exciting opportunities for staff, faculty and students to collaborate with prevention workers in the community. The theme of the conference is “Rethinking Diversity,” which will offer an occasion for all to reflect on our assumptions and to learn new effective strategies to intervene with addiction issues.”
Ann Womble, member of the MU Council of Trustees will open the day with a welcome to the MU community at 8 a.m. Dr. Daniel Wubah, MU president, will introduce the keynote speaker, MU alumnus Antonio Hernandez, at 3 p.m. Dr. Mary Glazier, professor and chair of the MU sociology department and the Director of the Center for Public Scholarship at Social Change will introduce a plenary speaker, Scott Theurer, who is in long term recovery from addiction. MU’s new counselor who specializes in addiction issues, Abby Peters, will also be in attendance.
Amy Sechrist, a certified prevention specialist at Compass Mark, is hoping students in the helping professions will also attend. Sechrist says, “With addiction at epidemic levels, it’s critical that our county’s addiction conference is accessible to anyone interested in learning more. The move to and collaboration with Millersville University grounds the conference in fresh ideas and allows MU student involvement in planning and attendance.”
The conference planning committee has collaborated with several MU departments such as the School of Social Work, the Wellness & Sports Sciences, the Counseling Center, the Center for Health Education & Promotion, President’s Commission on Gender & Sexuality Diversity (PCGSD) and many more.
Registration for the conference is open online here and is $15 for the public to attend but it is free for Millersville University students. There are only 300 spots available.