School of Social Work Sponsors Substance Abuse Intervention Training

Dr. Rowena Wilson, Dean – School of Social Work

Norfolk State’s Ethelyn R. Strong School of Social Work is hosting the Screening, Brief Intervention & Referral for Treatment (SBIRT) training on campus Tuesday, April 18, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Student Center, Room 370. SBIRT is a comprehensive public health approach for delivering prevention, early intervention and referral to treatment services to people using substances in a harmful or risky way.

The training is designed for social workers, counselors, nurses, nurse practitioners, physicians, faith-based community workers and other behavioral health providers from all settings who work with adolescents and adults. These professionals can benefit from understanding substance use across a continuum and its impacts on clients’ behavioral health and other psychosocial interactions.

At the end of the training, program participants will be able to:

  • Identify SBIRT as a system change initiative
  • Compare and contrast the current system with SBIRT
  • Introduce the public health approach
  • Understand the continuum of substance use
  • Discuss the need to change how we think about substance use behaviors, problems and interventions
  • Define brief intervention/brief negotiated interview
  • Develop knowledge of motivational interviewing
  • Describe referral to treatment

“From the overwhelming agency response to the training, we think that the timing is right and the need is here in the community to address the problems of addiction and substance use. The response cuts across all kinds of agencies, churches, mental health, social services, judicial, public and private, profit and nonprofit, etc.,” said Dr. Rowena Wilson, dean of the Ethelyn R. Strong School of Social Work.

The training is provided by the National SBIRT/Addiction Technology Transfer Center (ATTC) Network, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and Norfolk State University. For more information, contact Jess Samuel at or call 412-258-8569.


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