Counselor nominated for national award
By Robert Deckert
Around the Campus Editor
Mark Schwarze, a counselor in the Counseling and Testing Center, was nominated for the Lora Roe Memorial Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselor of the Year Award.
The nomination is presented by the Association for Addiction Professionals.
Only one nominee is selected from each state and the winner will be announced during the association’s annual conference, Sept. 5-8 in Nashville, Tenn.
The Lora Roe Memorial Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselor of the Year Award is presented to a counselor who has made an outstanding contribution to the profession of addiction counseling.
My work is very important because we literally deal with matters of life and death with students, Schwarze said.
Robert Canida II, director of the Office of Multicultural and Minority Affairs, said Schwarze is to be commended for his hard work.
“It is better for the university for one of their own to receive such an esteemed award,” Canida said. “His office takes great strides in educating students of the pitfalls of substance and alcohol abuse.”
Schwarze received his MA in counseling from UNCP and is a licensed clinical addiction specialist and a nationally certified counselor.
Like any other campus, we have drinking and substance problems; we provide interventions to keep our students safe, Schwarze said.
We need students to be aware that our office is somewhere they can come to when in crisis for free and confidential counseling, he continued.
“I hope to give students the tools to make good choices,” he said.
Dr. Denisha Sanders, director of the Career Center, said that Schwarz is someone whom the students feel they can talk to and that the students love him because he relates to them easily.
This award brings a lot of recognition to Schwarze personally, professionally and for UNCP, she said.
Schwarze and his office have had an impact on UNCP students.
“Mark and his office have had a tremendous impact from working so closely with the community,” Canida said.
“He is very pertinent to the students’ personal and academic success. He has definitely proven himself to be an asset to our students and the community,” Canida continued.
Schwarze will be on a panel at the Town Hall Series 2007: “Understanding Addiction” program which will take place at the UC Annex on Sept. 24 at 7 p.m.
The program will feature the HBO documentary, “Addiction.”
The program is open to the campus and community, and there will be free food and refreshments.
The program is designed to attack the myths of addiction, Schwarze said.
“We prefer to think of it as a disease, not weakness,” he said.
In addition to Schwarze, there will be several psychiatrists on the panel.
The President of Addiction Professionals of North Carolina will also be present at the program.