New River CTC expands recovery support

Melinda Price

New River Community and Technical College recently welcomed Melinda Price in the role of peer recovery support specialist for students at the college.

“The student population that we see in our community college mirrors the population in the communities we serve,” explained New River CTC President Dr. Bonny Copenhaver. “In our communities, we have people in active recovery and active addiction, and in our classrooms, we also have people in active recovery and active addiction. As a college, we want to be mindful of this and provide support to our students to help them succeed beyond earning their degree or certificate.”

New River CTC is part of the West Virginia Collegiate Recovery Network, an innovative partnership, offering peer recovery support services on eight higher education campuses. Funding for the peer recovery support specialist position is provided by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources Bureau for Behavioral Health through State Opioid Response Funding from Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

“We are honored to have New River CTC join the network,” said West Virginia Collegiate Recovery Network Project Coordinator Susie Mullens. “Melinda is a great addition to the team and has experience in student support.”

Price is a 2021 honor graduate of New River CTC with an associate degree in social services and a member of Phi Theta Kappa Academic Honor Society. She has more than three years of experience working as a recovery specialist.

The recovery support specialist positions were developed to assist students that identify as being in recovery along with family members impacted by addiction, build a support system, connect students to recovery services and provide peer to peer services.

“Whether a student is recovering from an addiction to a substance or gambling, an eating disorder or depression, we want them to know that we are here to help them,” Price explained.

The WVCRN is a project of the Alliance for the Economic Development of Southern WV, a higher education collaborative of 11 institutions in southern WV. For more information on the network, please visit

For information about recovery support at New River CTC, visit