A young adult’s path to sustainable, long-term sobriety and healthy living requires an approach that is comprehensive, specifically tailored to age, and creates an emotional attachment to the idea of being sober. This concept of attraction-based programming is at the core of what sets Sober College apart from other drug rehab centers.
Sober College empowers young women and men ages 18-26 to discover their purpose, find true passions and follow a path of excellence. We offer an innovative drug rehab program and one-of-a-kind treatment model built around the Five Core Competencies, seamlessly integrating academics and rehabilitation. Learn more about the different phases of our program, our treatment model, your son or daughter’s personliazed treatment team, and tour our facilities.
We understand that choosing the right program is extremely difficult. There are, after all, hundreds of programs from which to choose. And, while we encourage everyone to research what is out there and available, we know our unique and innovative approach to drug and alcohol treatment is not only effective, it’s simply the best option for young adults ages 18 to 26.
“Our innovative drug treatment model, centered around Five Core Competencies, helps clients develop the tools needed to maintain a sober lifestyle not only in treatment, but long after they leave our care.“
Our treatment process can only be explained to some extent. No child has the same treatment program because no child is dealing with the same addiction or mental health challenges. It is this feature that makes us the best at what we do. We pride ourselves on understanding your child as a whole person and believe it would be a disservice to provide a one-size-fits-all addiction treatment plan.
However, we understand how important it is to get an idea of how a child will move through our program and reach recovery. We also understand how important it is to get a sense of what a child’s day-to-day will look like at Sober College. Read on to find those answers and walk a mile in a Sober College client’s shoes.
Phase 1: Assessment & Goal Setting (approx. 0-90 days)
- Comprehensive competency assessment & treatment planning. Assessment begins with our admissions process. We require a detailed application prior to admission that is reviewed by our Executive Team to ensure that we are the best fit for every young adult that walks through our doors. Once a client admits, they are assessed in all Five Core Competencies – Sobriety, Emotional Growth, Productivity, Life Skills and Fitness. A plan is developed and short and long-term goals are set.
- Every young adult is matched with their own personalized treatment team.The application and intake assessments are used to determine each client’s treatment team. The treatment team stays with our client throughout all phases of our program and ensures that they are succeeding in all Five Core Competency Areas.
- Achieving balance and success. In order to move through our program and earn privileges, a client needs to be progressing in all Five Core Competency areas based on their own individualized treatment plan. Achieving goals within life skills, productivity, recovery, fitness, and emotional growth helps ensure that clients are learning the tools they need to succeed in the next phase of treatment and life afterward.
- 24 hour staffing, with awake overnight staff, and random drug testing are consistent throughout the first 6 months of our residential treatment program.
Phase 2: Implementation & Senior Program (approx. 91 – 180 days)
- Beginning the transition to independent living. Clients have the opportunity to begin taking more responsibility for their schedules, life skills, and planning.
- Pursuing educational and career goals. Clients can continue to take classes on-site at Sober College, a local community college, or a trade school depending on their plans. We can also assist in the college application, transfer, or reintegration process, as needed. If a client is pursuing a vocational track, we assist in resume building, mock-interviews, and career planning, encouraging clients interested in a vocational track to get a job and begin working.
- Clients move from the primary house to apartment-style living. Giving them a feel for what college, or independent living would be like.
- 24 hour staffing in a separate living space, and random drug testing. Clients get the feel of independent living in housing with staff checking in and on the property 24 hours a day, including an awake overnight staff.
Phase 3: Independent Living (approx. 6+ months)
- Sober living. Clients in our extended care and sober living program for young adults are making their own schedules. They are meeting with their counselors and therapists, practicing life skills, and working and/or attending school and staying sober.
- Customized aftercare.clients are living on their own while still participating in the Sober College program. Aftercare and sober living clients can still attend therapy, psychiatry, academic counseling and classes, gym membership and more, depending on their own individualized interests and needs.
- Clients are truly living independently. With little at home supervision, but still random drug testing, clients are living and enjoying their new sober lives, utilizing the tools they learned while in treatment.
- Alumni & community involvement. Events for the sober living program are still hosted. Clients are encouraged to attend Sober College Alumni events and participate in athletic teams.
Note: Our program structure is not meant to be equated to levels of care in regards to insurance billing. We also offer academic outpatient and outpatient services to clients not living in our housing.
Our treatment model allows us to treat your whole child, not just their problem with drugs and alcohol. Since 2006, our young adult drug rehab program has been helping young adults overcome their addiction and more importantly discover their passions and life goals while leading independent and fulfilling lives. With decades of combined experience from a variety of treatment professionals, we’ve created and refined Five Core Competencies that have led to the most successful outcomes for clients. Keep reading to learn how these competencies will save your child’s life and help them live up to their full potential.
Sobriety: The Overall Goal of Treatment
Our team of addiction specialists support recovery first. We help calm and heal the brain, showing our young adults that a happy, healthy life free from mood-altering substances is possible and preferable.
- Helping your child’s brain re-balance & heal. Abstinence from illicit drugs and alcohol allows the brain to re-balance itself and heal. While this re-balancing takes place, the newly sober young adults will most likely experience intense cravings and feelings of frustration, grief, and anger. In time, the brain will achieve equilibrium and the client will begin to feel the benefits of sobriety.
- We pair each client with an individual Certified Addiction Counselor who they can talk to day and night to help manage their cravings and keep their sobriety on track. We also ensure that each client works with a 12-step sponsor. We provide education to our clients so that they understand the process their brain undergoes when they become sober.
Emotional Growth: For Managing Life’s Stresses Without Substance
Sober College’s dual diagnosis approach to treatment clinical excellence by providing each client with screening by our Neuropsychologist, a weekly meeting with our board certified Psychiatrist, and an individual therapist well-versed in evidenced-based treatments for substance and co-occurring mental health issues. All clients also participate in group and experiential therapies including surfing, rock climbing, yoga, as well as trauma-based therapies when appropriate.
- Diagnosing & treating underlying mental health issues. When someone begins their journey into sobriety, his or her brain has to re-learn how to process emotions and increase impulse control. Any underlying mental health issues or emotional symptoms from past traumas or adverse childhood experiences that were being masked or subdued by the drug and alcohol use now rise to the surface. These emotional, psychological and interpersonal issues must be addressed for the client to heal and move forward.
- Experiential therapies designed for young adults. Experiential activities including surf therapy, trapeze therapy, and equine therapy are also incorporated. As an age-specific treatment program, these non-traditional therapies prove to be especially effective in treating young adult substance abuse and engage out clients in new ways.
- Trauma therapy & somatic experiencing. Trauma work is an integral part of the emotional growth competency, as many of clients have experienced trauma in their lives. Clients at Sober College who are ready to work through their traumas have access to practitioners of Somatic Experiencing
- We pair each client with an individual therapist to help him or her process through emotional and psychological issues and further develop their strengths to move forward and build a life worth living. We also have clients meet with our psychiatrist to manage medication needs.
Life Skills Training: For Independence After Treatment
We help prepare our clients for independent living by offering training in both personal life skills (e.g. money management, cooking) and relational life skill (e.g. communication and decision making). We also teach our clients skills to develop healthy relationships with peers not centered around drugs and alcohol. Building these relationships is key to their happiness and overall well-being.
- Healthy relationship & self-care = healthy brain. For long-term healing and wellness, clients must be able to create and sustain healthy relationships with others and be able to provide self-care. From interpersonal neurobiology, we know that healthy relationships reflect a healthy brain. That is why life skills are such an important part of the treatment process at our long term residential program.
- Accountability to the whole. Clients are held accountable for keeping their living space clean and participating in group cooking and house planning. They also are encouraged to practice healthy relationships with other clients and staff and learn how to live in a community.
- Our house staff and mentors are trained to help clients relate to one another respectfully and compassionately. Staff also help clients learn cooking, cleaning and self-care skills.
Productivity: For A Passionate Life & Career After Rehab
Getting sober as a young adult means that our clients have their whole life ahead of them. However, learning to live life sober and prepare for the future can be frightening and challenging. We help our clients achieve their academic and vocational goals and find their sense of purpose by providing them with an Academic and Vocational Coach and offering fully accredited college course on-site. Throughout Creative Arts program which includes a recording, visual arts, and broadcast film studio, our clients discovery or rediscovery of their passions.
- Helping repair executive functioning for long-term sobriety. Studies show that clients with substance use disorders often show deficits in their executive functioning skills. Focusing on academic work, creative endeavors and productivity skills including scheduling and self-monitoring helps our clients increase their brains’ executive functioning abilities.
- Our rehab program offers college credits in the form of five accredited college courses on-site. We offer five, three credit WSCUC accredited college courses at the treatment center through our partnership with Woodbury University so that clients can get started with their productivity goals right away.
- Creativity through music, film, and visual arts helps heal the brain. We also offer a full professional-grade music studio, television studio, and art studio because research shows that creative endeavors also help the brain heal and increase productivity. Creativity in Recovery groups introduce or reintroduce our clients to creativity now that they are sober and encourage our clients to practice self-expression through music, film, and/or visual arts.
- We pair each client with an individual Academic Coach who creates a specific and individualized productivity plan.
Fitness: For The Mind & Body
Research shoes that regular exercise improves brain function and balances the nervous system. Our fitness program work to make healthy living accessible to everyone by featuring outdoor activities and competitive individual and team sports ranging from soccer and lacrosse to Frisbee golf. We also offer nutritional counseling and personal training as needed.
- A healthy body = a healthy mind. Healthy diet, regular sleep patterns and regular exercise are integral to brain health and healing.
- Fitness & nutritional support Helps create lasting health. Fitness is a mandatory part of each client’s schedule. Gym memberships are included. A nutritionist is available as needed for clients who need guidance with their nutritional needs.
- Gym memberships, extramural individual and team sports, on-site yoga, and more. Yoga is mandatory once per week, and additional yoga classes and individual yoga instruction is available. Our fitness director organizes regular inter and extra-mural sports activities including soccer, football, basketball and more. Clients can also go kick-boxing, mountain biking, and mountain climbing, surfing and more.
For each competency in our treatment model, your child has a member of our staff assigned to their personalized treatment team. Your child’s team is hand-picked based on their individual needs and are there to help them along their journey – mentally, physically, and emotionally. Read below to learn who your child can expect to work with on a daily and weekly basis.
Counselor – Sobriety
Each client has their own Certified Drug & Alcohol Counselor to help guide them through the process of recovery. This relationship becomes a source of support and strength in the recovery process throughout the time your son or daughter is with us.
- Individual meetings with their counselor as needed, a minimum of once per week, and sobriety-based groups including relapse prevention and recovery groups several times per week. Offsite 12-step meetings and sober activities.
- Your son or daughters counselor is also your point of contact. You will have weekly calls to discuss your son or daughter’s progress. You can also contact your child’s counselor at any time with questions or concerns.
- Credentials: CADC Certified
Therapist – Emotional Growth
The client-therapist relationship at Sober College is considered sacred. Using our admissions application and intake assessments, each client is paired with a therapist that our treatment team believes will be the best fit. Therapists are full-time, on-site, and available to our clients as needed.
- Individual meetings with therapist 1-3 times per week, meetings with psychiatrist once per week, meetings with trauma practitioner as needed, group processing and relational groups several times per week.
- Credentials: Master’s and Doctorate level therapists and psychologists, licensed or pre-licensed through the state of CA
House Manager – Life Skills
House Managers are available 24/7 for our clients. Together with the house staff, or Mentors, our House Managers ensure that clients are engaging in the community and learning the skills they need to progress toward independent living.
- 24/7 Staff supervision until the client shows enough progress to venture out on their own
- Credentials: Mentor and House staff are trained weekly and participate in regular supervision to help them best support our clients
Academic & Vocational Coach and Creative Arts Team – Productivity
Each client here has their own Academic and Vocational Coach to help them stay on track academically, find their passions, and/or pursue their educational or career goals. Working with our Creative Arts Team helps clients find an outlet and means of self-expression outside of drugs and alcohol.
- Individual meetings with Academic Coach as needed, a minimum of once per week. All our Academic coaches are on-site full time and available to provide one-on-one support as needed.
- Throughout their stay, as long as they are on track in all other competencies, the music visual arts and film and television studios and creative arts team are open and available.
- Credentials: All Academic and Vocational Coaches are Adjunct Professors for Woodbury University and are Master’s or Doctoral level
Fitness Director, Medical Doctor & Yoga Instructor – Fitness/Physical Health
Together our health and fitness team ensure that each client is on a nutrition and fitness plan that fits their needs and that they are learning and practicing healthy habits that they can take with them long after they leave our care.
- Clients work with the fitness director and counselors to ensure they are keeping up with their fitness regime.
- Our medical doctor specializes in addiction medicine and can help clients overcome the challenges that early recovery can have on the body and health.
- Our yoga therapist and yoga instructor provides group and individual yoga therapy and other healing yoga classes to help out clients learn and practice mindfulness aiding in both a healthy body and mind
- Credentials: Our Medical doctor is board certified and specializes in Addiction Medicine. Our Fitness Director is Master’s Level, has his Doctor of Chiropractic Degree, and a number of other Certifications. Our Yoga Instructor is certified in a number of different types of Yoga and works closely with our Yoga Therapists
Click here to learn more about the team members your child will meet at Sober College.
To help visualize your child’s life at Sober College, explore photos of our facilities. Not only will they enjoy clean, renovated living facilities, but our therapeutic learning center is equipped with amenities equivalent to a university. During recovery, clients have access to:
- Individual therapy offices and group rooms
- Academic department with classrooms, library, private tutoring rooms, and more
- Yoga Studio
- Professional-grade recording studio & music department
- Broadcast film studio with green screen and editing software
- Visual Arts Studio
- Auditorium & stage for talent shows & more
- Multiple experiential therapies held off-site
Watch and read reviews from parents and alumni describing their experience at Sober College. We also understand that you might want to talk directly with a parent whose child has been through our program. Let our admissions team know, and they will promptly put you in touch with one.
Contact Us and Let Us Help You Find Out If Sober College is The Right Fit For Your Child
If what you’ve read so far makes you think we’d be a good fit, we’d love to learn more about your child and whether we can help. Give our admissions team a call at 800.465.0142 or fill out a contact form and we’ll get back to you within 24 hours.