CSU’s drug and alcohol abuse treatment program, Day IV, is being
used as a model for universities around the country.
The multi-phase program monitors and supervises students with
substance-abuse problems. The first phase focuses on abstaining
from substance use; the second on personal and leadership
development; and the third phase requires students to get involved
in a volunteer program.
The National Association of Drug Court Professionals and
representatives from other universities recently visited CSU to
learn about Day IV, an innovative alcohol and substance-abuse
program that offers students rehabilitative treatment rather than
“It is a novel idea. There are people who come to college with
drug- and alcohol-dependency problems,” said Lisa Miller, assistant
director of Conflict Resolution and Student Conduct Services at
CSU. “When students are found responsible for violating the student
code of conduct they become a part of the Day IV program. Past
programs were like a revolving door. As soon as an abuser got out
of prison they would re-offend and end up back in prison. Day IV
breaks that cycle. It provides an opportunity for treatment.”
Miller said recent alcohol-related problems at CSU did not
affect recognition of the program.
“Last year the program was recognized by the National
Association of Drug Court Professionals. One year ago they were
interested in the program but were seeking funding to promote it,”
The program was initiated in 2001. Cheryl Asmus, director of the
Family and Youth Institute at CSU, created the program with the
help of Judge William Dressel, president of the American Judicial
College. They modeled Day IV after a community program in Larimer
“I created the program because if we were to kick the students
out on the street, that’s where they would stay. This way they have
a chance,” Asmus said.
Because the program has had a 72 percent success rate after
working with 99 students, it has drawn the attention of other
“Our program probably won’t change because of the recognition,
but it will continue to change and evolve to better serve the
students. Other national universities want to replicate the program
and they will adapt it to their specific needs,” Asmus said.
This is also the only program of its kind in the nation.
“We have the only drug court at a university. Lots of people are
very excited. We had a team of folks on campus in September looking
at the program. It was also a featured program by the National
Association of Drug Court Professionals in February. They are
currently looking to find funding to start the program at five or
six other universities,” said Anne Hudgens, executive director of
This program is different from programs at other university
campuses because it does not expel students immediately.
“These are people who have drug or alcohol problems. They are
not criminals. The only reason most of them commit crimes is to
support their addiction,” Asmus said. “CSU is the only university
in the country that keeps students out of trouble and in school
while helping them fight their addiction.”