The Faces of Harvest House: Dan

From High School Dropout to PhD Graduate

In the moments after receiving his PhD on stage, the first people that came to mind for Dr. Dan Crepault were his parents “because I knew how much this meant to them.” Dan said.  He knew they probably never imagined their son, once a high school drop out with a drug addiction, would one day earn his PhD and positively affect so many young men who are now facing addiction.

Dan was 17 when he arrived at Harvest House. If we’re honest, he wasn’t Dan, he was Danny. Danny was dropped off at the doors of Harvest House, by his parents who felt like they were out of options with how to deal with Danny’s addiction. Danny had just been kicked out of another drug rehab centre and his future did not look bright at all.

“At first, I had no interest in staying for the full year,” Dan said, “but I didn’t really have anywhere else to go.” It turns out that running out of options, may have been the best thing for him. Danny decided to give the Harvest House program a chance and while he didn’t see much potential for himself as a High School dropout, the people of Harvest House saw his potential. Education has always been a crucial part of the Harvest House program and after showing a commitment to the program, Danny was encouraged to get his high school equivalency diploma (GED).

Once Danny had tapped into his educational potential, it led him down a path that was once unimaginable.  He was able to obtain his GED at Harvest House and thanks to the Enriched Services Program (ESP) at Carleton University he began pursuing his undergraduate degree. In his second year, he was hired to become a mentor for incoming students and by his third year he was awarded the Millennium Excellence Award. Danny was quickly learning that the more he applied himself to life, education and his recovery, the more fulfilling life became.

In 2011, Danny graduated from Carleton University with a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology. From there he went on to get his Master in Legal studies which led him to pursue his PhD in Criminology at the University of Ottawa.

In the spring of 2019 and after 12 years of post-secondary education Dan graduated with his PhD in Criminology.

Harvest House faithfully supported Dan throughout his studies, giving him rides to school until he could afford a car, providing him a part-time job so he could pay his tuition, and allowing him to continue living in a re-entry home. This is part of what makes Harvest House so special. It’s not only about helping young men get sober. It’s about showing them how much potential and talent they have and giving them the support they need to turn their potential into accomplishments. It’s about giving them hope for a successful life full of purpose.

He arrived at Harvest House as an addicted high school drop out with no hope for the future but with the encouragement and support of those who believed in him, he has attained the highest possible degree in his field, earning the title of Dr. Crépault PhD (Criminology).

Dan has worked hard in both his personal and professional life. He’s restored his relationship with his family and was married just over 4 years ago! In February 2019, Dan was appointed as the Associate Director of Program at Harvest House. Using the experience he’s gained during his time at Harvest House, Dan serves, counsels, and mentors addicted men to help them turn their lives around. Remembering how Danny was, is what makes Dan so great at helping other addicted young men find potential and hope when there once was none.

Dan’s story shows what can happen when we, as both a society and individuals, embrace second chances.