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TU Social Work student attends Harvard conference

Paula Davis of Thomasville, a Senior Social work student at Thomas University, attended a conference last month presented by the Harvard School of Medicine and Cambridge Health Alliance. “Treating the Addictions” was a conference presented March 6-7 at the Boston Park Plaza in downtown Boston, Massachusetts.

During the conference, Davis learned about the latest findings on addictive behaviors in teens, adults and families. She also learned about new treatment methods and research results while earning 14 hours of continuing education units.

Davis, who will graduate in May from TU with a Bachelor of Social Work Degree, plans to continue her education by pursing a Master of Science Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling with a concentration in mental health and substance abuse.

“Addictions is a shaky topic for some people,” Davis said. “I want to find solutions for the patients and clients I work with. I really want to be that come-to person who can help them achieve a positive outcome.”

While at the conference, she learned about topics that included recent findings on the addicted brain; how race, crime and justice impact treatment; the psychology of 12-step recovery; and interventions for attachment issues, computer addiction, trauma and stress relating to addictions.

Davis said the conference was a great learning experience and opened her eyes to emerging topics in substance abuse, such as opioid addiction.

“I really had no idea that opioid addiction was so bad, but it is,” she said. “The race, crime and justice panel was also really good. That was the opening topic.”

Davis currently interns at Archbold Medical Center in the area of case management and social services.

“Treating the Addictions” is held each year with speakers focusing on different topics each time. Davis hopes to return for next year’s conference so that she can learn more.


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