Life After Rehab: Colleges in Tampa, FL

Pursuing a College Degree in Tampa after Rehab in Tampa

At the heart of recovery from drugs and alcohol is transformation. That transformation begins during WhiteSands rehab in Tampa when individuals exchange one way of living for new, healthy ways of living. It involves a wide range of changes. Some changes have to do with how an individual copes with negative emotions. Rather than meet at the bar with friends, they now gather with new acquaintances at the yoga studio or weekly support group meetings. Some people choose to make significant life changes that support their new plans for living and building a new career. For these people, life after rehab may involve pursuing a college degree or advanced academic degree.

Education is always a positive step for an individual whether they already possess a college degree or are planning to step foot in higher learning institutions for the first time. Learning is an enriching way to spend one’s time. Of course, a college education is also geared to provide a person with the support they need to build their chosen field career. Once a person can shed their dependence on drugs or alcohol, they can take advantage of all the opportunities available globally. Many of these people choose to attend college and focus on career training and immersing themselves in an area of academia that resonates with their interests and life plans.

Of course, college is one path. After leaving rehab and continuing their recovery journey, some people choose to return to their former jobs or careers. Others attend vocational training or pursue other interests like physical fitness or a particular pastime like rock climbing or sailing. At WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab, we encourage individuals recovering from drug or alcohol addiction to tap into new interests and pursuits to fill the void left behind once they remove drugs, alcohol, and negative people from their lives. College studies are a good solution for many people and, if this course of action is ideal for you, you can attend schools right here in Florida located around the Tampa area.

Tampa, Florida is located near many colleges where people can study a wide range of subjects. The area’s colleges attract adults of all ages looking to pursue a degree or simply enhance their lives with some additional learning. There are many benefits associated with attending college or university. First, a college degree can help a person become more competitive in the job market. It can gain them entrance into a career they couldn’t otherwise qualify for. For instance, many jobs require a college degree as a prerequisite. A college degree can be associated with more significant income-making potential.

On the other hand, many people attend college primarily to work in a fulfilling career. When a person leaves rehab, they awaken to all the previously stunted interests because of their drug or alcohol use. They can now tap into interests and nurture them by attending classes and possibly obtaining a formal degree. Achieving a Bachelor’s Degree, Master’s Degree, or Ph.D. is a personally gratifying pursuit. Challenging but well worth the time and dedication.

If you choose to attend a Tampa, Florida college or nearby university, you’ll need to select a school to apply to. If you are just getting your ‘feet wet’ in higher education, you might simply sign up for a couple of classes in the subject matter you’re interested in learning about. Different colleges feature various offerings, so you’ll want to choose a school that offers the types of coursework you have in mind. If you have a degree in mind, you may also want to select a respected school for its specific degree programs. For instance, some schools feature a renowned business school or are well-known for their science, education, or art programs.

Once you decide to attend an area college, you’ll need to start researching colleges to narrow down your choice and determine what you need to do to apply to the school. Colleges feature teams of support staff and academic counselors who can help you navigate exactly what to do to apply. Once you have a college in mind, you can schedule a meeting with its admissions department to get the support you need to get started. Some schools have special programs designed for adults returning to school after being out of school for a considerable time. One of these programs might be ideal for you.

Then, of course, you’ll need to follow through and complete your applications. You may also wish to apply for financial aid at the same time. The college’s admissions team can also advise you about applying, and what types of support may be available to you. The truth is, people who have never attended college before may find the application process overwhelming or even intimidating. Tell your aftercare counselor or recovery support group about your plans to help you out and overcome these initial challenges. Once you have the formalities completed and are accepted to a school, you can focus on meeting the specific challenges of each course you take.

A university or college experience can be a truly incredible experience. Taking time to learn is an investment in your own personal growth and future. Fortunately, many Florida’s colleges and universities feature flexible programs, so students can often work and attend school. Some students take online classes or opt for hybrid experiences to attend some in-person courses and some online.

Colleges in the Tampa Area

Tampa, Florida, and the surrounding area features a diverse array of universities and colleges to consider if you plan to attend school after rehab. The following are some of the options you may wish to consider:

University of Tampa

An accredited university, the University of Tampa features a highly respected faculty and attracts students from all 50 states as well as international students. It has a student body of about 9,600 students and more than 200 academic programs, including Athletic Training, Biochemistry, Art Therapy, Cybersecurity, Accounting, Education, Journalism, Nursing, Public Health, and Marketing.

401 W Kennedy Blvd, Tampa, FL 33606

University of South Florida


The University of South Florida is located in the heart of Tampa. It offers more than 180 degree programs and features a student body of more than 40,000 undergraduate and graduate students. Some of the university’s most popular academic majors include Anthropology, Applied Science, Accounting, Behavioral Science, General Business, Information Science, Music Studies, Political Science, World Languages, and more. The university also boasts a myriad of recreational amenities like fitness centers for students to enjoy.

4202 E Fowler Ave, Tampa, FL 33620

Eckerd College

With its waterfront location, Eckerd College is a popular Tampa school that has about 1,800 students. This small private Presbyterian college is accredited and features many different majors despite its small size. Some of its areas of study include International Business, Physics, Biology, Computer Science, Literature, Spanish, Ancient Studies, and more. It college offers 39 minors and provides an enriching campus life.

4200 54th Ave S, St. Petersburg, FL 33711

Florida Southern College


With a student body of more than 3,500 students, Florida Southern College was founded in 1883. It is known for its attractive campus and buildings, some designed by the celebrated architect Frank Floyd Wright. It features about 50 undergraduate majors such as Advertising Design, Business Administration, English, Theatre Arts, Computer Science, Dance Studies, Economics and Finance, Education, and History.

111 Lake Hollingsworth Dr, Lakeland, FL 33801

Saint Leo University

A Roman Catholic Liberal Arts College, Saint Leo University has a student body of about 11,000 students and offers both in-person and online courses. It features more than 40 degree programs, including Business Administration Management, Information Technology, Global Studies, Human Resource Management, Mathematics, Political Science, Sociology, Psychology, Theology, and Accounting.

33701 State Rd 52, St Leo, FL 33574

Florida College

A small private college, Florida College is a private institution that features 17 different degree programs. It is especially revered for its minister training programs; however, other popular areas of study include Nursing, Business, Education, Liberal Studies, and Music and Fine Arts.

119 N Glen Arven Ave, Temple Terrace, FL 33617

If you are recovering from an addiction to alcohol and drugs and have completed your formal therapy, you might consider pursuing your studies at one of these Tampa-area universities and colleges. Part of transforming your life is to define new goals. Where do you want your life to be in one year? Two years? Five years? College can help you learn and train for a new career that provides you with fulfilling work and allows you to make a comfortable living.

Even if you choose not to pursue a formal degree, taking a few classes now and then can be an exciting way to spend your free time and provide you with opportunities to meet a diverse array of people. Talk to your WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab therapist about your plans to attend college and get some support as you put your plans into motion. Studying for your college or university classes can enhance your ongoing recovery journey and help you transform your life to meet your new goals.

If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.

About the Author

Jackie has been involved in the substance abuse and addiction treatment sector for over five years and this is something that she is truly eager about. She has a passion for writing and continuously works to create informative pieces that not only educate and inform the public about the disease of addiction but also provide solutions for those who struggle with drug and alcohol abuse.