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Student working with an instructor in the behavioral health and human occupation lab

In the UW-Milwaukee Behavioral Health and Human Occupation Laboratory, we investigate college student drinking interventions, college student time use and well-being, and the factors contributing to the well-being and mental health recovery of people with serious mental illness in our community.

We examine secondary prevention for high-risk drinking in collaboration with the Center for Addiction and Behavioral Health Research, the Norris Health Center, and University Housing. A randomized controlled trial is underway to compare the effectiveness of interventions among freshman residing in Sandburg Residence Hall. Interventions are designed to reduce harm related with high-risk drinking by inspiring students to make healthy choices about their alcohol use through motivational interviewing and educational resources.

Serious mental illness and related substance use affects a significant number of adults who want to fully participate in their community in meaningful roles like serving others, parenting, education, work, advocating for others affected by mental health and substance abuse, finding rewarding and creative opportunities to develop new talents, and engaging in daily routines that help them be their best. We work with mental health agencies (Transitional Living Services, Mental Health Association, Grand Avenue Club), faculty, and students to study and promote best practices related to substance abuse associated with mental illness.