Addiction Counseling Degree Approved

Posted by Paula Paine on March 18, 2014 in On February 11, the University Academic Council approved the addition of a Bachelor of Science in Addiction Counseling degree as part of Ottawa University’s Adult, Professional and Online Studies academic programming beginning summer of 2014. The program is designed to meet mandatory state and national licensing/certification requirements in 35 of the 50 states, including all of the states in which OU is currently located.

Counseling-Photo.jpgThe founder and director of the new Addiction Counseling program is Dr. Kirk Bowden, who helped write the Arizona academic requirements for counselor licensure as a governor appointee and serves as a subject matter expert for the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. A product of Ottawa University’s counseling program, Bowden earned his MA in Human Resource Counseling in 1994 before going on to earn his PhD in Psychology from Northcentral University in 2005.

Bowden is the president-elect of NAADAC, the association of addiction professionals; a past president and current member of the board of directors of the International Coalition for Addiction Studies Education (INCASE); co-chair of the Ethics Committee of the American Counseling Association; chair of the Addiction and Substance Use Disorder program at Rio Salado College; founder and former director of the Grand Canyon University Counseling and Addiction Studies program; board member of the Arizona Board of the Behavioral Health Examiners; and member of the steering committee of the U.S. Mental Health Services Administration/Center for Substance Abuse Treatment’s Partners for Recovery. He also serves on the editorial boards of several renowned professional publications.

Bowden will be in good company within the new online Addiction Counseling program, as Ottawa University is securing other renowned professionals and educators from across the nation to serve as professors for the degree. Some of these include Dr. Peter Myers, editor-in-chief of the Journal of Ethnicity in Substance Abuse and co-author of “Becoming an Addictions Counselor;” Dr. Ed Reading, assistant director of the Professional Assistance Program of New Jersey and Graduate Substance Abuse Counseling program coordinator at the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey; Margaret Anne Smith, EdD, associate professor at Keene State College and INCASE board member; Dr. Ellarwee Gadsden, assistant professor of social work at Morgan State University and INCASE board member; Dr. Joan Standora, director of the Chemical Dependency Counseling Program at Kingsborough Community College; Greg Granderson, president of the California Association for Alcohol and Drug Educators; and others of equal credentials.

One of a handful of online undergraduate Addiction Counseling degrees, OU’s new offering will be a viable option for new students entering the program, as well as community college students transferring from a psychology, human services or related program. A Master of Science in Addiction Counseling is being explored to complement the new program in the near future.