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Friday, August 10, 2007

UNCP counselor nominated for national award

Mark Schwarze, a counselor and program coordinator with UNC Pembroke’s Center for Counseling and Testing, was nominated for the Lora Roe Memorial Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselor of the Year Award. 

Mark SchwarzeThe award is given by  the National Association for Addiction Professionals (NAADAC), the largest membership organization serving addiction counselors, educators and other addiction-focused health care professionals, who specialize in addiction prevention, treatment and education.

The winner will be named from nominees from across the nation at the association’s annual conference in September.

Dr. Monica Osburn, director of UNCP’s Center for Counseling and Testing, said the nomination is an honor.

“We are extremely lucky to have someone of Mark’s caliber on the staff,” Dr. Osburn said. “His credentials and experience in substance abuse are rare not only in the state, but in the nation.”

A counselor with ten years of experience, Schwarze joined UNCP in 2005 as counselor and coordinator of the Coalition to Prevent Alcohol-Related Consequences, a program that is part of a national research project of the Wake Forest University School of Medicine. 

In 2007, Schwarze’s role at UNCP expanded as a counselor and coordinator of all alcohol and drug programs. His career has spanned areas of domestic violence, at-risk adolescents and intensive outpatient counseling at a residential treatment center.

At Palmer Prevention, Inc. in Lumberton, N.C., Schwarze developed and led two programs, the Robeson County Teen Court Program and the Music Industry Program, both aimed at providing alternatives to drugs and alcohol to low income, high-risk adolescents. In 2006, Schwarze and Dr. Osburn co-authored an article on counseling college substance abusers that appeared on the cover of  Addiction Professional magazine.

With nearly 11,000 members and 46 state affiliates, NAADAC’s network of addiction professionals spans the U.S. and the world. This national award is presented to a counselor who has made an outstanding contribution to the profession of addiction counseling.  Schwarze was nominated by the NAADAC state affiliate, Addiction Professionals of North Carolina (APNC).

Schwarze earned a master’s degree in service agency counseling from UNCP and is currently working on his doctorate in counselor education at NC State University. He is a Licensed Clinical Addiction Specialist, a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Nationally Certified Counselor. 

He is a member of the American Counseling Association, American College Counseling Association, National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors, and the Addiction Professionals of North Carolina.  In 2005, Schwarze was awarded the Outstanding Addiction Professional award by the Addiction Professionals of North Carolina. 

For questions about UNCP’s Center for Counseling and Testing, please call 910.521.6202 or email counselors@uncp.edu.

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