In this episode, we talk with Vilmarie Narloch, Psy.D as she shares how her journey through addiction research, humanistic healing, policy reform, and academia intersect at her place in the psychedelic field.
Vilmarie wears many hats but is best known for her work at Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP) as Director of Education.
She received her M.A. in Counseling and Psychological Services at St. Mary’s University of Minnesota and went on to pursue a doctorate of psychology in clinical psychology at Roosevelt University (where she also became a member of SSDP).
Focused on patient-first clinical work and expanding access to harm reduction services, Vilmarie focused her research on substance use disorder and destigmatizing drug use. With her dissertation, she revealed that students were seeking unbiased, evidence-based information about drugs, and she later delivered by establishing SSDP’s national Just Say Know peer drug education program.
Vilmarie also launched SSDP’s Psychedelic Pipeline, a project that bridges student mentees entering the psychedelic space to mentors who currently investigate psychedelic medicine.
When Vilmarie is not ending the war on drugs, she is also co-creating Sana Healing Collective, a safe haven and patient-forward ketamine assisted psychotherapy clinic.
Look out for the next Psychedelic Pipeline cohort, accessible to SSDP members!
SSDP Chapters Near you: https://ssdp.org/chapters/
Sana Healing Collective: https://sanahealingcollective.org/
SSDP Psychedelic Pipeline: https://ssdp.org/psychedelic-pipeline/
2:19 Vilmarie’s academic and research journey in clinical psychology, addiction, and harm reduction, leading to her first year as a member of SSDP as a graduate student at Roosevelt University
5:43 Her CIIS experience in 2018
6:12 What is harm reduction?
7:15 Exposure as a student to client-focused practices set a high precedent for harm reduction
8:44 How her desperation to treat a patient-led to one very influential google search
10:32 from SSDP member to Director
14:07 Dissertation turned career, on the creation of an honest drug education program--Just Say Know
22:55 Newest SSDP Project, the psychedelic pipeline
24:48 Addressing barriers to mentorship and guidance in academia and research for BIPOC. How SSDP is filling those gaps in the Psychedelic Field.
27:34 Her mindfulness-based practices (her secrets to doing so much and staying healthy)
30:45 Being Latina in research and in the psychedelic field. How has identity impacted Vilmarie’s vision for the future
33:01 On the creation and mission behind Sana Healing Collective, how to make healing collective in today’s medical framework
35:33 Addressing modern barriers to care with group-identity integration, community-centered healing, and more assessable treatment options at Sana Healing Collective.
37:54 Mentors and support systems, what they do and where to find yours (for the listeners). How support from her community helped Vilmarie achieve her greatest personal goals in the space
40:21 Can SSDP be the support system and community for you
43:42 Advice for the listeners and aspiring harm reductionists
44:24 Secret to the community is unlearning competitively amounts peers (competitively =/= connectivity )
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Music by: https://www.alexka