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Program Profile: SAM (Solution, Action, Mentorship) Program for Adolescent Girls

Evidence Rating: Promising - One study Promising - One study

Date: This profile was posted on December 07, 2017

Program Summary

This is a school-based, substance-use-prevention program for adolescent girls, which uses solution-focused brief therapy and community and peer mentorship. The program is rated Promising. Program participation was shown to have a statistically significant effect on lowering drug use, improving social competence, increasing knowledge surrounding drug use, and increasing negative attitudes toward drug use. The program had no statistically significant effect on grade point average or self-esteem.

Program Description

Program Goals/Target Population
The SAM (Solution, Action, Mentorship) Program is a school-based, substance-use-prevention program that targets adolescent girls in middle school. The objective of SAM is to change participants’ drug-using behaviors through group therapy. Specifically, the program aims to reduce substance use, increase negative attitudes toward drug use, increase knowledge of the physical symptoms of drug use, and increase student achievement and self-esteem.
 
Program Components
The program consists of solution-focused brief therapy (de Shazer 1988; Metcalf 1995), action-learning techniques (Jackson 1995), and community and peer mentorship.
The program includes weekly 1-hour group sessions for seven or eight students, which are conducted for 16 weeks. Each student session consists of action-learning lessons, discussions, and guest speakers who are usually community and peer mentors. These sessions are then followed by private (school counselor and students only) solution-focused, brief therapy sessions using the Metcalf (1995) model.
 
The action-learning group lessons focus on issues related to identity formation (Erikson 1968) and are facilitated by one school counselor, five community mentors, and three high school student mentors. Topics such as goal setting, career exploration, drug information, peer-pressure resistance, decision-making, and relationships are discussed.
 
Following the action-learning group lessons, the mentors leave, and the school counselor conducts the group counseling sessions using solution-focused brief therapy. These sessions are spontaneous, allowing for the incorporation of material to be unique to each participant.
 
Parents participate in two meetings (one prior to program implementation and one at the conclusion of the program) that are conducted by the school counselor.
 
Program Theory
The SAM Program is based on the following theoretical approaches: identity formation theory (Erikson 1968); social influence theory; social learning theory, which is incorporated through mentorship and parent involvement (Bandura 1986); and cognitive–behavioral strategies, which are incorporated into the solution-focused brief therapy (Botvin et al.1990). 

Evaluation Outcomes

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Study 1
Drug Use
Froeschle, Smith, and Ricard (2007) found that students in the program group had lower self-reported drug use, compared with the control group. This difference was statistically significant.
 
Social Competence (Parent-Observed)
Students in the program group scored higher than the control group on a social competence scale used to measure parent-observed social behavior. This difference was statistically significant.
 
Social Competence (Teacher-Observed)
Students in the program group scored higher than the control group on a social competence scale used to measure teacher-observed social behaviors. This difference was statistically significant.
 
Cumulative GPA
There was no statistically significant difference in cumulative grade point average (GPA) between the program group and the control group.
 
Students Attitudes Toward Drug Use
Students in the program group scored higher than the control group on a measure of student attitudes toward drug use. This difference was statistically significant.
 
Self-Esteem
There was no statistically significant difference on a measure of self-esteem between program participants and the control group.
 
Knowledge About Consequences of Drug Use
Students in the program group scored higher than the control group on a measure of knowledge related to the physical symptoms of drug use. This difference was statistically significant.
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Evaluation Methodology

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Study 1
Froeschle, Smith, and Ricard (2007) used a randomized controlled trial to test the effect of the SAM (solution, action, mentorship) Program on educational, substance use, and social outcomes among adolescent girl participants. Forty students were randomly assigned to the program group, and 40 students were randomly assigned to the control group. Of the students in the program group, 22 were Mexican American, 16 were white, and 2 were black. The control group consisted of 21 Mexican American, 16 white, and 3 African American females. About half of the students in each group were eligible for the school’s free- or reduced-lunch programs. Prior to completion of the study, eight students in the program group and seven students in the control group dropped out.
 
Four instruments were administered to students before and 4 months after the intervention. Instruments included the American Drug and Alcohol Survey (ADAS), the Substance Abuse Subtle Screening Inventory–Adolescent Version 2 (SASSI–A2), the Piers-Harris Children’s Self-Concept Scale–Version 2 (PHCSCS–2), and a knowledge exam. Additionally, information was collected on grade point averages and number of teacher-written office referrals for each participant prior to and following the intervention.

To determine statistical significance, a multivariate analysis of covariance (MANCOVA) was conducted using pretests as a covariate, group membership (placement in control or program groups) as the factor variable, and scores on the eight posttest scales as the dependent variables. Univariate statistics (ANCOVAs) were run as a follow up to determine which of the dependent variables were related to group participation and had a statistically significant effect. No subgroup analyses were conducted. 
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Cost

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There is no cost information available for this program.
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Implementation Information

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For the Froeschle, Smith, and Ricard (2007) study, community and high school mentors were selected in conjunction with district staff. Criteria for selection of the community mentors included attendance at two counselor-led training sessions, passing a criminal background check conducted by district administration, current success in educational or professional endeavors (including current employment and/or advanced degrees), recommendation by a district employee, and the desire to assist adolescent girls. 
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Evidence-Base (Studies Reviewed)

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These sources were used in the development of the program profile:

Study 1
Froeschle, Janet G., Robert L. Smith, and Richard Ricard. 2007. “The Efficacy of a Systematic Substance Abuse Program for Adolescent Females.” Professional School of Counseling 10(5): 498–505.

http://professionalschoolcounseling.org/doi/pdf/10.5330/prsc.10.5.a458605px1u57217
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Additional References

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These sources were used in the development of the program profile:

American School Counselor Association. 2005. The ASCA National Model: A Framework for School Counseling Programs (Second Edition). Alexandria, Va.: American School Counselor Association.


Bandura, Albert. 1986. Social Foundations of Thought and Action: A Social Cognitive Theory. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice Hall.


Botvin, Gilbert J., Eli Baker, Linda Dusenbury, Stephanie Tortu, and Elizabeth M. Botvin. 1990. “Preventing Adolescent Drug Abuse Through a Multimodal Cognitive-Behavioral Approach: Results of a 3-Year Study.” Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 58(4): 437–46.


Cepukiene, Viktorija, and Rytis Pakrosnis. “The Outcome of Solution-Focused Brief Therapy Among Foster Care Adolescents: The Changes of Behavior and Perceived Somatic and Cognitive Difficulties.” Child and Youth Services Review 33:791–97. (This study was reviewed but did not meet Crime Solutions' criteria for inclusion in the overall program rating.)


de Shazer, Steve. 1988. Clues: Investigating Solutions in Brief Therapy. New York, N.Y.: W. W. Norton.


Erikson, Erik H. 1968. Identity: Youth and Crisis. New York, N.Y.: W. W. Norton.


Jackson, Tom. 1995. More Activities That Teach. Cedar City, Utah: Red Rock Publishing.


Metcalf, Linda. 1995. Counseling Toward Solutions. San Francisco, Calif.: Jossey-Bass.

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Program Snapshot

Age: 13 - 18

Gender: Female

Race/Ethnicity: Black, Hispanic, White

Geography: Urban

Setting (Delivery): School

Program Type: Classroom Curricula, Cognitive Behavioral Treatment, Gender-Specific Programming, Group Therapy, Mentoring, Alcohol and Drug Prevention

Targeted Population: Females

Current Program Status: Active

Listed by Other Directories: Model Programs Guide

Program Developer:
Jane Hicks
Belmont University
1900 Belmont Blvd.
Nashville TN 37212
Phone: 806 367 0042
Fax: 615 460 5684
Email

Training and TA Provider:
Jane Hicks
Belmont University
1900 Belmont Blvd.
Nashville TN 37212
Phone: 806 367 0042
Fax: 615 460 5684
Email