Traci M. Bank


There has been an undeniable upward trend of college students reporting mental health conditions, and university counseling centers unable to solely manage the influx of students requiring services. As such, many higher educational institutes have created and implemented various ways to support these students and encourage help-seeking behaviors. Stigma-reduction and peer support programs appear to be the most widely recognized and developed, however, research indicates that students continue to struggle with psychological distress despite these efforts. The recovery model, which is rooted in treating substance abuse disorders, has shown efficacy in its application towards mental health treatment and has relevance for a college population. In an attempt to provide universities with a cohesive body of evidence-based literature and current college programming that appears to be effective, this project sought to utilize recovery-oriented principles as a framework for addressing mental health issues on college campuses. A critical analysis of the literature involved review of five recovery principles identified by Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), efficacious strategies to promote programs reflective of the recovery principles, and identification of existing college mental health programs. The study determined that while many universities are headed in the right direction, there is an uneven distribution of research amongst college programming. Additionally, recommendations were made for future research and program development.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (PsyD) -- Psychology; College students -- Mental health; Recovery movement -- United States; Education, Higher -- Social aspects

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Lowe, Dennis