The Signing of the Extension of the Memorandum of Understanding Between the University of Crete and the Organization Against Drugs (O.KA.NA.)

The Rector of the University of Crete, Professor Georgios M. Kontakis, and the President of the Organization Against Drugs (O.KA.NA), Mr. Athanasios Theoharis, signed on Tuesday, October 4, 2022, the extension of the Collaboration Agreement that has been in place since 2016. The Memorandum of Understanding  is part of the Interdepartmental Postgraduate Program “Clinical Interventions in Addictions” which is offered by the Department of Psychology and the School of Medicine of the University of Crete.

On behalf of the University of Crete, the Rector, Professor Georgios M. Kontakis, the Vice-Rector for Finance and Infrastructure, Professor Konstantinos Spanoudakis, the Vice-Rector for Planning, Administrative Affairs and Student Affairs, Professor Dimitrios Mylonakis, the Dean of the School of Social Sciences, Professor Georgios Panagis, the Chair of the Department of Psychology, Professor Theano Kokkinaki, and the Professors of the Interdepartmental Master of Science Program attended the proceedings. The Organization Against Drugs  was represented by the Chairman of the Board of Directors, Athanasios Theocharis, and the Vice Chairman of the Board, Athanasios Dimitriadis.

The Memorandum of Understanding  articulates and makes explicit the structure and roles and responsibilities of the collaborating partners within the framework of the “Clinical Interventions in Addictions” MSc program.  The collaborative is committed to contributing to the evidence-based knowledge in substance abuse prevention and treatment in Greece and elsewhere.

The Dean of the School of Social Sciences, Professor Georgios Panagis, referred to the strategic collaboration of the University of Crete with O.KA.NA., the largest drug addiction and prevention service provider in Greece, which is currently expanding its interventions to both drug and behavioral addictions. The MSc program “Clinical Interventions in Addictions” covers an important gap in postgraduate education in Greece by providing specialization in drug prevention and addiction according to the Scientific Practitioner model. It offers a pluralistic curriculum that equips students with a solid theoretical background and supervised internship training in the field of addiction prevention and treatment.

The Rector of the University of Crete, Professor Georgios M. Kontakis, praised the usefulness of the Postgraduate Study Program that combines theoretical knowledge with professional training, especially in the difficult field of addiction. He emphasized that the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement seals and extends the collaboration that is beneficial and fruitful for the institutions, the graduate students, and the country’s addiction services.

The President of O.KA.NA., Mr. Athanasios Theoharis, underlined the importance of the collaborative practice, as it contributes significantly to the professional development of the health and welfare workforce and consequently to service provision in drug addiction  and behavioral addictions.  He noted that graduates of the MSc can be employed directly in the field addiction treatment and prevention programming.

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