Andrew, Alumni of Newport Academy

Andrew, an alumni of Newport Academy, was struggling with teen depression and teen anxiety prior to attending Newport Academy residential treatment. His depression and anxiety paralyzed Andrew and kept him from pursuing his passions. The Newport Academy Culinary Arts Program ultimately helped him get back on track to a stable and happy mental state. By learning how to cook, Andrew found a healthy outlet to cope with his mental health struggles.

The nutrition courses at Newport Academy are aimed at teaching healthy cooking and eating skills to teens struggling with mental health and substance abuse issues. In addition, Newport Academy clinical counselors say cooking also reduces stress, builds self-esteem, and curbs negative thinking by focusing the mind on following a recipe.

The Culinary Program Director at Newport Academy runs the courses, and teaches teens how to make healthier versions of their favorite foods. Furthermore, the culinary staff demonstrates techniques for tasks like chopping vegetables or making meat patties. Then, the teens follow along using their own ingredients.

The cooking courses are part of the treatment center’s goal of getting teens involved by doing. On average, Andrew typically engaged in several hours of talk therapy each day. Cooking was a fun activity for him, during which Andrew didn’t think he was actually doing therapy. It very naturally helped him achieve a positive mental health state. Today, Andrew often cooks with other alumni of Newport Academy in his home kitchen, and is thankful that the Newport Academy Culinary Arts Program helped him find his passion, and an alumni community to share it with.

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