The Commonwealth Prevention Alliance (CPA) is seeking individuals to form a Student Advisory Council consisting of students currently enrolled in a Pennsylvania college or university.

CPA's mission is to support drug and alcohol prevention professionals in eliminating substance abuse and risk related behaviors.  For us to better serve professionals working in the field, we need the input and guidance from students who have an interest in improving the overall public and behavioral health of their campus and community.

CPA has been in existence for 44 years and is considered the premiere voice of prevention in PA.  We have members from across the commonwealth working for Single County Authorities (SCA's), Higher Education, and Prevention Coalitions (Communities that Care, Drug Free Communities, Tobacco Control, Overdose Prevention, etc.).   A few current initiatives and events CPA coordinates include:

Student Position Description

Members of the CPA Student Advisory Council (SAC) advise the CPA board on the needs of college students.

Student Term of Office

A maximum of twelve students will serve for one academic year, approximately October to May.

Application Deadline

The application will remain open into the fall semester.  All candidates will be notified of the status of the application.

Advantages and Opportunities for Student Members

  • Developing and honing your leadership skills and becoming an agent for positive change.
  • Networking with amazing student leaders.
  • Adding an impressive credential to your resume.
  • Immediate consideration for a full scholarship to attend the 2021 CPA conference.
  • Some level of participation at the annual CPA conference.
  • Interview opportunities and job leads at CPA statewide agencies and coalitions.
  • Job networking opportunities with professionals in the field.

Other Beneficial Experiences

  • Giving you a place to use your gifts and talents.
  • Allowing you to brainstorm solutions to challenges rather than having all the answers.
  • Potentially building relationships with professionals from your hometown community.
  • Collaborate with members of CPA and the Collegiate Committee toward the accomplishment of their goals.

Student Responsibilities

  • Checking email regularly; email is the primary communication vehicle for the Student Advisory Council.
  • Provide a monthly update to the CPA Collegiate Committee monthly.
  • Provide an update to the CPA Board of Director Meetings two (2) times a year (possibly March and May 2021).  You will not have to attend the entire meeting – just the student advisory portion.
  • Promote membership of the CPA Student Advisory Council to other collegiate students.
  • Developing student level, student-led initiative(s).

Student Requirements

  • Be a current CPA member, at an annual membership rate of $15.00. See more details below under student membership in CPA (waived for this year due to Covid).
  • Currently enrolled in a Pennsylvania college or university.
  • Provide a monthly update to the CPA Collegiate Committee monthly.
  • Provide an update to the CPA Board of Director Meetings two (2) times a year (possibly March and May 2021).  You will not have to attend the entire meeting – just the student advisory portion.
  • At the end of the term, CPA student advisory council members will be expected to provide a short narrative on the successes and challenges of their experience on the CPA Advisory Council.

Student Membership in CPA

The Student Advisory Council members shall be CPA members in good standing (see student requirements above).

  • Your membership in CPA will be from November 2020 to December 31st, 2021.

Other Helpful Tips

  • Be yourself, but also represent fellow students.
  • Be a role model. We don't expect perfection, but rather students who generally make good choices when it comes to alcohol and other drugs.  We are here to support and not judge.
  • If struggling with substance and/or mental health issues, we are here to help and guide you to support services, on your campus, or in the community. Our conversations around this issue will be confidential
  • Actively contribute to meetings and activities of the Student Advisory Council.
  • Be open to discussing challenging topics and campus issues.
  • Be collaborative advocates.
  • Be willing to respectfully challenge and be challenged.
  • Be passionate about working toward a truly inclusive and just Student Advisory Council.

Student Application Instruction

To become a member of the CPA Student Advisory Council, please fill click the application button at the bottom of the page.

  • After opening the application, a log in box will appear. Please just “x” out of this box in the top right corner and begin the application process.

Listed immediately below are the 5 questions you will be asked as part of the application.  Please keep in mind that for each answer you are limited to 1,024 characters and spaces.

  1. Why do you wish to become a member of the CPA Student Advisory Council?
  2. What qualities, strengths, skills, interests, and/or experiences would you bring to the CPA Student Advisory Council?
  3. In your opinion what are two of the most pressing substance use/misuse prevention issues facing students on your campus now? Why?
  4. Have you ever attended any substance use/misuse prevention events sponsored by CPA or other groups on or off your campus? If yes, please list and describe.
  5. List any campus organizations and/or departments with which you are most closely connected and the leadership roles you have held on campus that are not already included on your enclosed resume?

Please remember to submit your resume and a letter of recommendation to Jeff Hanley, at