A New Kind of College Party

Paige Cerderna, 24, confessed that, “I had no inhibitions with alcohol, I could talk to guys and not worry about anyone judging me. I remember being really proud the day I learned to chug a beer. I couldn’t get that feeling fast enough.”

While this admission may not seem too out of the ordinary, the place where she shares it is. The University of Michigan now offers students an alternative to the typical college experience, reminiscent of Animal House: enter the Collegiate Recovery Program.

Actively trying to maintain sobriety in college can seem downright impossible. From football game tailgates to fraternity parties, most college campuses are not exactly conducive to a sober environment.

This very reason is exactly why the University of Michigan is one of 135 Collegiate Recovery communities throughout the country. Regardless of whether or not the college is large or small, all of the programs make helping students maintain their sobriety while still succeeding in college, a priority.

According to Mary Jo Desprez, founder of Michigan’s Collegiate Recovery Program, “it shouldn’t be that a young person has to choose to either be sober or go to college. These kids, who have the courage to see their problem early on, have the right to an education, too, but need support.”

With Paige, who ended up watching Netflix alone in the library most Friday nights, or Molly who read all of the Harry Potter books alone in her room during her first months sober, the Recovery Program offers students the opportunity to have fun, without compromising their sobriety or education.

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