Collegiate Recovery Programs (CRPs) and Collegiate Recovery Communities (CRCs) are terms that are often used interchangeably to describe an institutionally sanctioned and supported program for students in recovery from substance use disorder seeking a degree in higher education. The goal of a CRP or CRC is generally to offer the chance for these students to experience the opportunities that higher education offers by providing support, preventing a return to use, and promoting academic performance. Research informs us that the most essential elements to a successful CRP/CRC are:
- University- dedicated staff person
- A physical dedicated space on campus
- Supports student’s individual recovery journeys
- Housed within an Institution of Higher Education that confers academic degrees
- Provides recovery protection services and recovery capital resources
- Peer to peer support
However, as this is a relatively new field and programs are starting all the time, individual CRPs may likely vary on key dimensions.
While the terms CRP and CRC are often used interchangeably, some programs use them in slightly different manners. There may be differences in the level and involvement of the university and the roles played by the staff. When inquiring about a program at a specific institution, be sure to clarify what they mean when they use a specific term.