Briggs (MA ’98) researches women, addiction

Cynthia Briggs (MA ’98) and co-author Jennifer Pepperell are putting their passion into print and setting their sights on changing the perception that addictions, such as drugs and alcohol, are mostly connected to males. Briggs and Pepperell wrote “Women, Girls, and Addiction:  Celebrating the Feminine in Counseling Treatment and Recovery,” about what Briggs calls the “full spectrum of women and girls struggling with addictive behaviors.”

“This concept is relatively new,” said Briggs, a counseling professor at Winona State University-Rochester (MN).  “Until about 25 years ago, the vast majority of research focused on the male experience of addiction and recovery.  Counseling interventions were developed for men, by men, and adapted to the needs of women.  In addition, there is very little research about girls and addiction.”

Briggs grew up in Roanoke, Virginia, earned a bachelor of science in psychology from Guilford College in Greensboro, North Carolina, and a masters of education in community counseling from Wake Forest. She graduated with her Ph.D. in Counseling from OSU and has been a professor at Winona State University-Rochester (Minnesota) ever since.  Her counseling experience includes addictions counseling, mental health counseling and higher education student services.

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