Skip to main content
NKU’s next Peer Support foundational course starts May 8th, 2023.
Applications open on March 1st and will close on April 14th.
Applications open to Kentucky residents only

Online Kentucky Peer Support Specialist Training Program:

Peer Support Specialists are individuals in recovery from substance use disorder or other mental health conditions who provide social and emotional support to others with similar conditions. Kentucky Peer Specialists (KPS) are employed to guide clients toward the identification and achievement of specific goals as defined by the client and specified in the treatment plan. The role is not to replace current clinical mental health staff but to offer additional and/or alternative options to help people in their efforts to recover.

NKU offers a part-time, flexible online training program where participants will:

  • Gain new knowledge and understanding of the stages and principles of the recovery process, the shift from maintenance to recovery, behavioral health, spiritual and cultural awareness, trauma-informed services, the Wellness Recovery Action Plan, self-care, and much more.
  • Develop new skills to assist in effective listening and communication, problem solving, exploring dissatisfaction and fears, establishing goals, combating negative messages/self-talk, suicide prevention, developing and sticking to ethical boundaries, and more.
  • Increase personal awareness
  • Enhance personal recovery

This is a 7-week 45-hour program that will require approximately 6 hours per week at times that are convenient to you. The cost of the training, which includes: registration, all training materials, exams, and certification with the Commonwealth of Kentucky, will be FREE to all participants.
Qualification for certification includes successfully completing both a written and oral exam upon completion of the course with an aggregate score of at least 70%. If you do not pass the exam, you may re-take it up to two times within a year from the training. You will be unable to take the certification exam if you have not completed all 7 weeks of the online course. Please note that certification with the Commonwealth of Kentucky does not carry over into Ohio.

Personal Reference Forms

Two letters of recommendation, in addition to a completed application, are required to be considered for the training. These references should come from members of your treatment team (i.e. healthcare provider, psychiatrist, therapist, group leader, employer if applicable). A reference from a sponsor is recommended. You are responsible for giving or emailing the attached personal reference request to the individuals speaking on your behalf.

Please have your references (2) address the following in an email to :

  • The applicant’s demonstrated recovery over the past year;
  • Any strengths or assets the applicant may offer as a Peer Support Specialist;
  • And the applicant’s ability to share his/her recovery experiences