America's Addiction Epidemic: Understanding the Problems, Identifying the Solutions

Dates & Costs

July 14 - 15
9:00 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.

$1,600 (regular tuition)
$1,360 (before May 16)
$1,360 (McCourt School alumni)
$1,200 (McCourt School students)

NOTE: Course was cancelled for 2016.

Target Audience

The program is targeted to those who seek to gain an in-depth understanding of the surprisingly misunderstood condition that affects over 23 million Americans.

Course Description

Our nation is in the midst of the worst addiction crisis in its history. The Center for Disease Control’s most recent report revealed that the rate of drug overdose deaths has increased 137% since 2000, including a 200% increase involving opioids. Over 100 people die every die from this disease. This epidemic has impacted almost every community nationwide and touches the lives of millions of Americans. Quite simply, everyone knows someone affected by addiction.

This workshop will provide participants with the most recent data, research and policies regarding addiction and discuss the policy implications that drug and alcohol addictions have across federal, state and local levels. The session will conclude with an exploration of the current best practices in dealing with addiction and promoting recovery. Participants will gain a unique insight into what can be done in terms of prevention, early intervention, treatment and recovery. It will highlight groundbreaking programs that have been developed in response to this potentially fatal disease.

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By the end of the course, participants will have acquired an understanding of:

  • the social, psychological, genetic and other factors which increase vulnerability to addiction
  • current legislation and policy changes at the state and federal level aimed at addressing addiction and promoting recovery
  • Cultivate the techniques to utilize conflict and disagreement at the group and institutional level
  • real-life examples of successful recovery efforts nationwide


Susan Broderick is currently the Project Director at Georgetown University’s newly created National Juvenile Justice Prosecution Center (NJJPC) and provides training and technical assistance to prosecutors and other professionals in the juvenile justice system.

Susan started her career as an Assistant District Attorney in the Manhattan District Attorney's Office, where she served from 1989 until 2003. During that time, she was assigned to the Trial Division, where she handled Domestic Violence and Homicide cases and was also a member of the Sex Crimes Unit. In 2000, she was appointed Deputy Bureau Chief of the Family Violence and Child Abuse Bureau. In 2003, Susan joined the staff at the National District Attorney's Association's National Center for the Prosecution of Child Abuse. She served as a Senior Attorney until September of 2006, when she was appointed Director of the Juvenile Justice Program. In June of 2006, she was named Interim Director of APRI, NDAA's Research and Development Division.

While Susan’s professional life has centered on the justice systems, her personal life has been a journey in which she has experienced first-hand most of the topics that she works on. Susan’s experiences growing up in a family where alcoholism was present and her own struggle with alcohol give her unique insight into the issues that many others “experts” have only studied.

As a woman in long-term recovery, Susan has not had a drink since July 15, 2001 and credits that date as a turning point in her life. Over the past fourteen years, Susan has been drawn to finding ways to use her own experiences in recovery to help others. She is the Associate Producer of “The Anonymous People”, a feature documentary about the 23 million people in recovery in the United States. The film has changed the national drug policy conversation from addiction to recovery. She serves on the Advisory Board of Harvard University’s Recovery Research Institute and is Chairperson of the Board of Directors for Phoenix Multisport, a non-profit organization that promotes a sober active lifestyle.


Students who complete this course will earn 1.2 continuing education units

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